Tag Archives: New Jersey Nets

NBA teams last appearance in conference finals

Atlanta Hawks logo

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Sports Stats ‘on Tapp’s a biweekly blog published every Wednesday and Sunday with a bonus “SIX STATS…” posting every Friday.


Last season Oklahoma City faced off against Dallas in one conference finals and the Miami Heat played the Chicago Bulls in the other conference championship series. In the 2010 NBA playoffs, four different teams played in the conference championship series… Boston, the Lakers, Orlando and Phoenix.

Following are the longest droughts for NBA teams playing in a conference final series.

Last time in conference finals… team

1970… Atlanta

Never (franchise began 1970-71)… L.A. Clippers

1976… Golden State

1979… Washington

Never (franchise began in 1988-89)… New Orleans Hornets

Never (franchise began in 1995-96)… Memphis and Toronto

1997… Houston

2000… New York Knicks and Portland

2001… Milwaukee and Philadelphia

2002… Sacramento

2003… New Jersey Nets

2004… Indiana and Minnesota

Never (franchise began in 2004-05)… Charlotte

2007… Utah

2008… Detroit and San Antonio

2009… Cleveland and Denver

2010… Boston, L.A. Lakers, Orlando and Phoenix

2011… Chicago, Dallas, Miami and Oklahoma City

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“Long time no see” in the postseason

Washington Nationals cap logo

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Sports Stats ‘on Tapp’ is a biweekly blog published every Wednesday and Sunday with a bonus posting “SIX STATS…” published every Friday.

A few weeks ago (specifically July 20) I posted an item that looked at the professional sports franchises that have the longest streaks of winning seasons. Today we look at the other end of the spectrum: those franchises that have the longest drought when it comes to playoff appearances.

Every city that has a professional sports franchise in the four major sports leagues each year looks for their team to perform well and hopefully bring home a championship. For many teams, failure to make a postseason appearance is a major disappointment.

Each season 52 teams (eight in major league baseball, 12 in the NFL, 16 in the NBA and 16 in the NHL) make the playoffs. There are several teams, however, that have not seen the playoffs in this century, and a couple of teams that have not made the postseason in over 20 years.

Following are the five teams in each of the four major professional sports leagues that have the most numbers of years since their last postseason appearance.

Major League Baseball                                         Last postseason appearance

Washington Nationals (Montreal)                                               1981

Kansas City Royals                                                                           1985

Pittsburgh Pirates                                                                            1992

Toronto Blue Jays                                                                           1993

Baltimore Orioles                                                                            1997

(WE INTERRUPT THIS BLOG FOR A TRIVIA QUESTION: What current American League manager was the skipper of the Pittsburgh Pirates in 1992, their last trip to the postseason? Answer at end of this posting.)

National Football League                                    Last Postseason appearance

Buffalo Bills                                                                                       1999

Detroit Lions                                                                                     1999

Cleveland Browns                                                                            2002

San Francisco 49ers                                                                        2002

Houston Texans                                                                               *****

(***** Have never been in the playoffs; came in to the league in 2002)

National Basketball Association                         Last postseason appearance

Minnestoa Timberwolves                                                              2004

Los Angeles Clippers                                                                      2006

Sacramento Kings                                                                           2006

Golden State Warriors                                                                   2007

New Jersey Nets                                                                              2007

National Hockey League                                      Last postseason appearance

Florida Panthers                                                                             2000

Toronto Maple Leafs                                                                     2004

Edmonton Oilers                                                                            2006

New York Islanders                                                                       2007

Winnipeg Jets                                                                                 2007

* Did you know? Seventy of the 122 professional sports teams in the four major sports have made it to the playoffs in one or both of the last two seasons.

TRIVIA ANSWER: Current Detroit Tigers manager Jim Leyland was the manager of the 1992 Pirates.