I guess New York area teams have a a habit of ruining historical occasions. In February 2008, it was the New York Giants ensuring that no team would finish 19-0 just yet.
It was a much smaller stage last night, and far fewer people actually cared, but the New Jersey Nets’ 118-110 victory against the Chicago Bulls put a spot to a new record for futility. The 2009-10 Nets, already record holders for the worst start (0-18 to start the season) were trying to avoid winning less games than the 1972-73 Philadelphia 76ers. That Philly team went a pathetic 9-73, and last night’s victory ensures that the Nets won’t be even more pathetic.
New Jersey’s victory was also its first two-game winning streak of the season, having beaten Sacramento 93-79 on Wednesday. The Nets can won their third-straight and 10th of the season tonight in Chicago, a team they actually beat 103-101 back on December 8.
Personally, I’m thrilled that the Nets got to nine wins. I can’t imagine being historically bad would be a selling point to free agents this summer. As bad as this season has been, the team’s future is bright with the potential of the first overall pick and John Wall, as well as enough money to bring in a marquee free agent. On top of that, Devin Harris will hopefully regain his status as an All Star, and Brook Lopez and Yi Jianlian hopefully gave us all a tease with their performances last night (68 combined points, Lopez was 14-for-17 from the floor, and Yi was 7-for-9 in the second half).
The Nets are awaiting an 80 percent sale of the team to Russian billionaire/playboy Mikhail Prokhorov, who will be featured on 60 Minutes tomorrow night. In the interview, he said, “I am excited to take the worst team of the league and turn it to be the best. I am confident. Do you remember in the Frank Sinatra song, ‘New York, New York’? If I can make it there, I can make it anywhere.”
Hears hoping he’s right.