25. Detroit Pistons (23): I don’t think a team has experienced this much turmoil since the “Jail Blazers” or the Isaiah Thomas-“led” Knicks of the mid-2000s. To be honest, it’s not the players’ fault either. Joe Dumars obviously made a mistake in hiring John Kuester, and Kuester has made massive mistakes in playing with the cards that he has been dealt. Greg Monroe has been solid, but the rest of this team remains as one, massive question mark.
24. New Jersey Nets (25): Just by adding Deron Williams to the Nets’ roster keeps New Jersey out of the NBA’s bottom five, but with a seven-footer who averages less than six rebounds per game and Sasha Vujacic as the Nets’ next best players, it’s hard to rise much higher in the NBA ranks.
23. Los Angeles Clippers (22): Blake Griffin is still just as cool as he was last week (probably even cooler), but the Clippers are still a team that is just on the cusp of breaking through. Swapping Baron Davis for Mo Williams was a great move for the future and his addition will definitely give the Clips some more cap-flexibility this summer and next as they look to build around Griffin, Eric Gordon and Co.
22. Milwaukee Bucks (24): The offense is going through Andrew Bogut and Corey Maggette – not Brandon Jennings, while the Bucks continue to lose, and look less and less like the 46-win team they were last season. With that being said, maybe Jennings isn’t so off in his recent comments.
21. Charlotte Bobcats (20): By trading Gerald Wallace to Portland, the Bobcats have officially no players on their roster from the original 2004-05 Charlotte team. Financial flexibility is the obvious reason for the trade, but as we’ve been seeing lately, playing in a small market is a deal killer for nearly every big free agent name. And unfortunately for Charlotte, the “allure” of getting your ass kicked by a middle-aged Michael Jordan in practice will never be enough to create big-time signings for the uber-small-market Bobcats.