Bobcats bumbling brings Air Jordan back to earth
After the Charlotte Bobcats’ season mercifully ended Thursday night with a 104-84 home loss to the New York Knicks, guard Gerald Henderson said: “We felt we were better than what our record said.”
They could hardly be worse. Charlotte’s final mark of 7-59 set an NBA record for the lowest percentage (10.6) of victories in a season.
But despite Mr. Henderson’s futile search for a silver lining, as former NFL coach Bill Parcells pointed out long ago, “You are what your record says you are.”
And the Bobcats are a team that recorded their last victory on March 17. They then lost their final 23 games. As with the first 36 defeats, many of those losses were by lopsided margins.
That unprecedented ineptitude is a severe embarrassment for a man regarded by many as the greatest basketball player ever — team owner Michael Jordan.
Assorted critics fault Mr. Jordan for much of the Bobcats’ bumbling due to misguided player-personnel decisions.
Former Charlotte coach Larry Brown, a Hall of Famer fired by Mr. Jordan early in the 2010-11 campaign after leading the Bobcats to the playoffs the previous season, even said last week that the team’s front-office executives “don’t have a clue” and serve as yes men for the famed boss.
But Mr. Jordan responded by telling the Charlotte Observer that he welcomes his staff to challenge his opinions, adding: “I’ve come to accept I’ll be scrutinized more than any other owner. I know now that I have to have a tough skin about these things.”
He evidently also has to have much better players.