Los Angeles Clippers: 15 Years: 1997-2012
Sacramento Kings: 15 Years: 2007-Current
Charlotte Hornets: 5 Years: 2017-Current
This is a bad one, for multiple reasons.
The Clippers and the Kings are tied at 15 seasons. The Clippers were a joke in the NBA for a long time. They had an awful owner, and it’s one of the few times that I know of where the team was taken away from an owner in a professional sport. If not for a vetoed trade by the league itself to keep Chris Paul out of a Lakers uniform, the Clippers streak would likely be longer.
So, it makes sense that they have the longest streak. The ineptitude of the Kings, however, shows just how bad they truly have been.
They even had Demarcus Cousins, pictured above, for a long time. He was supposed to be their saving grace, and get them to the playoffs. Unfortunately, they were never able to find a single good player to put alongside him. Even after he was traded away, the team still hasn’t been very good.
It’s unlikely they make it this year, as they are 3.5 games back of the 10th seed, which would get them a spot in the play-in games. I’m not sure if you’d call that a playoff appearance (I wouldn’t), but it looks like they are going to break the all-time NBA Playoff drought record and make it 16 straight seasons.
Like hockey, the second-longest active streak is only five seasons. IN the NBA, an astonishing 16 of 30 teams make the playoffs every year (20 of 30 if you count the play-in, which you shouldn’t), so it’s hard to go a long time without making the playoffs.
Then we get to a team in the NFL that missed out on the playoffs in just as many straight seasons as the Mariners have in baseball.