Every sport in a world has a set of some unfortunate teams who just can’t seem to win anything in their history. Sometimes, they even have all the tools and still can’t lift any silverware. So is the case in NBA too, there are teams that never won an NBA Championship!
Some of these teams have come close to winning a Championship, while others have not had much success at all. In this blog post, we will take a look at each of these teams and discuss their history in the NBA.
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The Pacers joined the NBA in 1976, and since then they have been to the NBA Finals three times but have never won a Championship. In 2000, the Pacers made it to the NBA Finals but lost to the Los Angeles Lakers.
In 2014, the Pacers made it to the Eastern Conference Finals but lost to the Miami Heat. The Pacers have had some great players throughout their history such as Reggie Miller, Jermaine O’Neal, and Paul George.
The history of the Charlotte Hornets is a short one, as the team was only founded in 1988.
Foundedounded in 1967 as the New Jersey Americans in 1967, the Nets were originally a part of the American Basketball Association (ABA).
The team was one of the four charter members of the ABA and won two Championships in that league. When the ABA and NBA merged in 1976, the Nets joined the NBA.
In 2002, they lost to the Los Angeles Lakers in four games, and in 2003 they lost to the San Antonio Spurs in six games.
Formerly known as the Vancouver Grizzlies, they were established in the 1995 season as part of the NBA’s expansion into Canada.
The Grizzlies have never won an NBA Championship and are one of two teams in the NBA that have never made it to the Finals (the other team is the Charlotte Hornets). The Grizzlies did make it to the Western Conference Finals in 2011 but lost to the Oklahoma City Thunder.
In 2017, they made it to the playoffs for the first time since 2013 but were swept by the San Antonio Spurs.
The Grizzlies have had some great players throughout their history such as Zach Randolph, Pau Gasol, and Marc Gasol.
The first NBA team to play in New Orleans was the New Orleans Jazz. The Jazz were founded in 1974 and played in New Orleans until 1979 when they moved to Salt Lake City and became the Utah Jazz.
The Jazz have never won an NBA Championship, but they did make it to the Finals twice. In 1997, they lost to the Chicago Bulls in six games, and in 1998 they lost to the San Antonio Spurs in four games.
In 2002, Hurricane Katrina forced the team to move to Oklahoma City for two seasons before returning to New Orleans in 2007.
The Phoenix Suns, who joined the NBA as an expansion team in 1968, have never won an NBA Championship.
The Suns have made it to the playoffs 29 times in their history but have only made it to the NBA Finals once. In 1976, they lost to the Boston Celtics in six games.
The Suns did make it to the Western Conference Finals four times (1993, 1995, 2005, 2010), but they lost each time. The Suns had some great players throughout their history such as Steve Nash and Charles Barkley.
In recent years, the Suns have been rebuilding and are hoping to return to prominence in the NBA.
New Orleans Pelicans
The New Orleans Pelicans were founded in 2002 as the Charlotte Hornets. The team moved to New Orleans in 2004 and became the New Orleans Pelicans in 2013.
The Pelicans have never won an NBA Championship, but they did make it to the playoffs twice. In 2015, they lost to the Golden State Warriors in four games, and in 2017 they lost to the Houston Rockets in five games.
One of their biggest stars is Anthony Davis, who is arguably their best-ever player in the NBA.
Los Angeles Clippers
The Los Angeles Clippers were founded as the Buffalo Braves in 1970.
The Braves moved to San Diego in 1978 and became the Clippers. In 1984, the Clippers moved to Los Angeles.
Since moving to LA, the Clippers have made it to the playoffs 17 times but have never won an NBA Championship. The closest they came was in 2014 when they lost to the Golden State Warriors in seven games.
The Clippers have had some great players over the years such as Blake Griffin, Chris Paul, and DeAndre Jordan.
Founded in 1967 as the Denver Larks, the Nuggets were a part of the ABA for nine seasons.
The team changed their name to the Rockets in 1975 and then to the Nuggets in 1976 when they joined the NBA.
Since joining the NBA, the Nuggets have made it to the playoffs 23 times but have never won an NBA Championship. The Nuggets did make it to one NBA Finals in 1977 but lost to the Portland Trail Blazers in five games.
The team has also had two Conference Finals appearances, losing in 1978 and 2009.
Some of the most notable players in franchise history include Alex English, Dikembe Mutombo, Carmelo Anthony, and Allen Iverson.
The Orlando Magic were founded in 1989 as an expansion team. They have never won an NBA Championship, but they did make it to the NBA Finals in 1995 and 2009.
In 1995, they lost to the Houston Rockets in four games. In 2009, they again made it to the NBA Finals, but this time they lost to the Los Angeles Lakers in five games.
Despite never winning a Championship, the Magic have been one of the more successful teams in recent years.
They have made the playoffs 11 times since their inception and have had some great players suit up for them over the years, such as Shaquille O’Neal, Penny Hardaway, Dwight Howard, and Tracy McGrady.
Like most expansion teams, the Minnesota Timberwolves found it hard to find success early on in their history.
The Timberwolves made the playoffs eight times in their first 20 seasons but never won an NBA Championship. In 2004, they made it to the Western Conference Finals but lost to the Lakers in six games.
The Timberwolves finally broke through and made the playoffs for 14 straight seasons from 1997 to 2010, but they were never able to make it back to the Conference Finals.
Some of the best players in franchise history include Kevin Garnett, Stephon Marbury, and Karl-Anthony Towns.
So those are NBA teams that have never won championships! As we can see some o these teams have had great NBA players, but just haven’t been able to win it all. NBA Championships are hard to come by and many of these teams have come close but just couldn’t get over the hump.
What are your thoughts on these franchises? Do you think they will ever win an NBA Championship? Let us know in the comments below!
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What did we expect vs. what we got. Is it maybe overrated/underrated?
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Want something to start with? Have a look at our pick.