First things first you need a team and you are spoilt for choice. There are 30 NBA teams each with its own history, reputation and philosophy. If you’re struggling to choose which one to support, these descriptions should help you choose which one suits you best.
The Atlanta Hawks are a tough team to define. They have made the Playoffs each of the last seven seasons and are on the way to making it eight. This franchise is steeped in history with legends such as Dominique Wilkins and ‘Pistol Pete’ Maravich infamous with the team. However they have only one NBA title in the teams 69 year history, coming back in 1958 when they were known as the St.Louis Hawks. This is an underdog team, the Hawks never seem to be challenging for a title no matter what players they have, but their fortunes seem to be changing this season with the team top of the Eastern Conference and a substantial chance of making noise in the Playoffs.
Star Player(s): Al Horford/Paul Millsap/Jeff Teague
An original NBA franchise since the Leagues creation. The most successful franchise in NBA history with 17 NBA Championships, the most recent coming in 2008. More legends than worth speaking about, to list just a few: Bill Russell, Larry Bird and Paul Pierce. This team is one of the most known and supported around the world and is never too far away from being a title contender. Currently deep into a rebuild with no real star to speak of it will be a few more years before they become relevant in the leagues landscape again however.
Star Player(s): Jared Sullinger
The NBA’s ‘cool franchise’. Partly owned by rapper Jay-Z and with team clothing that everyone seems to own nowadays (I’m sure you’ve seen at least twenty-three people with a snapback with the teams logo on) this is a team that people know the name of. Formerly the New Jersey Nets this team has never won a championship since joining the NBA in 1976. The team did have a title chance in the early 2000’s when led by Jason Kidd but couldn’t pull it through. A decent roster that hasn’t seemed to gel with massive contracts means that the future of the franchise is a little in limbo. They have the talent to be at least a contender for a title but whether they can change their fortunes will have to wait until next season.
Star Player(s): Deron Williams
The history of the ‘Charlotte Hornets’ name is a complicated one. We will be dealing with the expansion team created in 2004, not the one in 1988 (now the Pelicans). The interesting fact that makes this team worth any conversation is that it is owned and run by the one and only Michael Jordan. The team is just dreadful however. Known as the Bobcats up until this season the team has only made the Playoffs twice in its short history and apart from that has been something of a joke. Enduring yet another poor season even with the talent to be relevant, it could be a while before they have a serious title chance.
Star Player(s): Al Jefferson
To some people the Chicago Bulls are simply Michael Jordan and nothing else. He brought the team its only title success and there was a lot of it. Apart from that the team hasn’t really done much in terms of title pushes, until recently. Derrick Rose offered the franchise new hope at championships but after reoccurring knee injuries it looks as though his time might be up in Chi Town. Known for tough, gritty defence under Tom Thibodeau this team will always be ready to fight until the final buzzer and leave everything on the floor.
Star Player(s): Derrick Rose
The Cavs are the team that are most likely to win titles in the near future for one reason; LeBron James. He left for Miami in 2010 for titles and has come home to give his city what it wants. In the late 80’s – early 90’s the Cavs were one of the NBA’s best, but this was followed by a decade of struggle. With Kyrie Irving and Kevin Love as well as LeBron they have a serious chance of being a contender for the foreseeable future.
Star Player(s): LeBron/Kyrie Irving/Kevin Love
Dallas were a surprise in 2011 when they beat the newly formed ‘Big Three’ to win a title, the only in their history. The franchise’s biggest name is of course Dirk Nowitzki, a former MVP in the twilight of his career. The future after that is a little murky for the Mavs. Monta Ellis, Chandler Parsons and Rajon Rondo offer some source of hope for the team but whether or not they can get the team back to championship level is debatable. Outspoken owner Mark Cuban will always get people talking, but will also always make the team relevant.
Star Player(s): Dirk Nowitzki
The Nuggets joined the NBA in the ABA merger in 1976. They have no titles to their name and no conference titles either. The team has had some great players; Alex English, Dikembe Mitumbo and Carmelo Anthony, but have never had the pieces in place to win. Today they are in a bit of a flux, looking promising a couple of seasons ago the team fired coach George Karl and promising executive Masai Ujiri left for Toronto. Since then they have been one of the NBA’s forgotten teams, with not much talent and no real prospects of getting better. Forward Kenneth Faried is the franchise’s glimmer of hope.
Star Player(s): Kenneth Faried/Ty Lawson
Whenever an NBA fan hears the Pistons name they cant help but think of the ‘Bad Boys’ of the 80’s and 90’s where the team won two titles and were famous for their on court antics. After that the teams main accomplishment was the title in 2004. Since then they have been pretty bad, not winning many games and losing faith much like the city itself. Some promising pieces in Andre Drummond and Brandon Jennings could mean the team having a chance at a title in a couple of years.
Star Player(s): Andre Drummond
Golden State Warriors
Wilt Chamberlain. The man that changed the NBA game forever. He shattered so many NBA records. The one that stands out from his time with the then known Philadelphia Warriors is his infamous 100 point game, a record that may never be broken. The team has won three titles in its history but its last came 40 years ago. In the modern day they are currently the NBA’s best team (by record) and have a serious chance to win the title this season led by Steph Curry and his ‘Splash Brother’ Klay Thompson.
Star Player(s): Steph Curry/Klay Thompson
The Rockets have a history of great big men, with Hakeem Olajuwon bringing the team two titles in the 90’s. Yao Ming carrying the franchise in the mid-2000’s, and currently Dwight Howard spearheading the team with James Harden to title contention. They are a team that always seem to be sniffing around titles but never seem to push themselves over the line. With Howard and Harden Houston are a contender this year and for years to come.
Star Player(s): James Harden/Dwight Howard
The Pacers have never won an NBA Title and have only really had one era where it was a possibility. Reggie Miller is a hall of famer and carried the team in the years of the Bulls dominance and a real golden era for NBA talent. More recently the team was a contender the past two seasons, reaching the conference finals both years. Paul George’s horror leg break has derailed their plans for this season but if he comes back better or even at the same level the Pacers will have a chance to make some noise in the title picture.
Star Player(s): Paul George
The Clippers have been the NBA’s joke franchise for so many years, never winning many games and being laughed at by fans around the league. That all changed when the team drafted Blake Griffin in 2009. After acquiring Chris Paul through a trade and coach Doc Rivers through the same means before this season the Clippers are a legitimate contender. Known for their flashy style as ‘lob city’ highlight plays are in an abundance They have the talent, coaching and mindset to win a title, it shouldn’t be long before they do.
Star Player(s): Chris Paul/Blake Griffin
The Lakers are the NBA’s most famous franchise. They have won just one less title than the Celtic’s and are their biggest rivals. Just like the Celtic’s the list of their legends is endless. Wilt Chamberlain, ‘The Logo’ Jerry West, Kareem Abdul-Jabaar, Magic Johnson, Shaq and Kobe. There are so many more but the list is literally endless. Recently however the story is the polar opposite. They have a 36 year old Kobe Bryant and absolutely no talent around him. They are in full rebuild mode and look irrelevant for seasons to come. Julius Randle looks promising however, even if injured for this entire season.
Star Player(s): Kobe Bryant
The Grizzlies were original founded the Vancouver Grizzlies in 1995, before the team moved to Memphis in 2001. The franchise has had some promising teams but has never really contended. Pau Gasol carried the team in the early/mid-2000’s before being traded for his brother Marc. The team came back to relevancy when Marc, was paired in the frontcourt with Zach Randolph. With Mike Conley running the point, the Grizz currently lie second in the conference and could be in with a shout come Playoff time.
Star Player(s): Marc Gasol
These are the first 15 of 30 NBA teams, the second 15 can be found here. If you’ve already chosen the team you want to follow let me know in the comments below!