FanPost

A 20 Win Improvement?


This evening, erastus25 made a comment about how he would be satisfied with 54 regular season wins, and how that would be a 21 game improvement over last year.

His reasoning was if we were to win 60% of the games from here on out (3-2 every 5 games): 18 wins + .600(60) = 54 wins.

I agreed, but started to wonder about the number of teams that have ever had a 20 win improvement season over season. Did having this vast regular season improvement in any way relate to that teams playoff success?

---

Before going further, I wanted to quickly mention erastus25' amazing fanpost, taking a historical look at teams with 15-3 records.

My key takeaways from the post were:

There have been 44 teams that have previously started the season 15-3.

100% of the teams made the playoffs
86% of the teams advanced to the second round
70% of the teams advanced to their Conference Finals
43% of the teams advanced to the NBA Finals
12% of the teams won the Championship

---

Since 1970, there have been 26 teams that have had 20 or more win improvements season over season.

I've broken them down into two groups.

(1) These are the teams that improved 20 or more games, but were starting from a solid foundation of at least a 29-53 record.

Team Prior Year Prior Year Record Improvement Year Improvement Year Record Game Improvement Playoff Result
Chicago Bulls 1994-95 47-35 1995-96 72-10 25 games Championship
Cleveland Cavaliers 2007-08 45-37 2008-09 66-16 21 games Lost Conf Finals
Chicago Bulls 2009-10 41-41 2010-11 62-20 21 games Lost Conf Finals
Portland Trail Blazers 1988-89 39-43 1989-90 59-23 20 games Lost Finals
Cleveland Cavaliers 1990-91 33-49 1991-92 57-25 24 games Lost Conf Finals
Portland Trail Blazers 2012-13 33-49 2013-14 ? ? ?
Boston Celtics 1978-79 29-53 1979-80 61-21 32 games Lost Conf Finals
Phoenix Suns 2003-04 29-53 2004-05 62-20 33 games Lost Conf Finals


As you can see, all 7 of the previous teams advanced to at least the Conference Finals, with 3 of the 7 teams advancing all the way to the NBA Finals.

(2) These are the teams that improved 20 or more games, but were starting from a record worse than 29-53(arranged by the second year record):

Team Prior Year Prior Year Record Improvement Year Improvement Year Record Game Improvement Playoff Result
Boston Celtics 2006-07 24-58 2007-08 66-16 42 games Championship
San Antonio Spurs 1988-89 21-61 1989-90 56-26 35 games Lost Conf Semi-Finals
San Antonio Spurs 1996-97 20-62 1997-98 56-26 36 ganes Lost Conf Semi-Finals
Phoenix Suns 1987-88 28-54 1988-89 55-27 27 games Lost Conf Finals
NJ/Brooklyn Nets 2000-01 26-56 2001-02 52-30 26 games Lost Finals
Memphis Grizzlies 2002-03 28-54 2003-04 50-32 22 games Lost First Round
Seattle Sonics/OKC Thunder 2008-09 23-59 2009-10 50-32 27 games Lost First Round
Chicago Bulls 2003-04 23-59 2004-05 47-35 24 games Lost First Round
Toronto Rapters 2005-06 27-55 2006-07 47-35 20 games Lost First Round
Washington Wizards/Bullets 2003-04 25-57 2004-05 45-37 20 games Lost Conf Semi-Finals
Chicago Bulls 1975-76 24-58 1976-77 44-38 20 games Lost First Round
NJ/Brooklyn Nets 1980-81 24-58 1981-82 44-38 20 games Lost First Round
Denver Nuggets 2002-03 17-65 2003-04 43-39 26 games Lost First Round
Golden State Warriors 1987-88 20-62 1988-89 43-39 23 games Lost Conf Semi-Finals
Miami Heat 2007-08 15-67 2008-09 43-39 28 games Lost First Round
Orlando Magic 1991-92 21-61 1992-93 41-41 20 games Missed playoffs
Charlotte Bobcats/NO Hornets 2004-05 18-64 2005-06 38-44 20 games Missed playoffs
Dallas Mavericks 1993-94 13-69 1994-95 36-46 23 games Missed playoffs
Boston Celtics 1996-97 15-67 1997-98 36-46 21 games Missed playoffs

All 5 teams that had records of at least 51-31 following the improvement won their first round playoff series, with 3 of the 5 teams advancing to at least the Conference Finals.

The Blazers would need to have a record of 53-29 to get to that 20 win improvement. The good news is that requires having a winning percentage under 60% the rest of the way. ie. worse than 3-2 every 5 games for the rest of the season.

This is all great news for the Blazers, as they would have to be 'historically' bad (to quote erastus25) the rest of the regular season to not be part of group (1) and record at least 51 wins for group (2).

Simply put, all the trends point to the Blazers not only making the playoffs, but also winning their first round series (and of course, if the playoffs started today, we'd be matched up with the Phoenix Suns).

---

For reference, with the current record of 18-4:

(1) 48 wins, would require 30-30, or on average 2-2 every week, the rest of the way

(2) 54 wins, would require 36-24, or on average 3-2 every 5 games, the rest of the way

(3) 58 wins, would require 40-20, or on average 4-2 every 6 games, the rest of the way

---

Go Blazers!

Cheers.

X
Log In Sign Up

forgot?
Log In Sign Up

Forgot password?

We'll email you a reset link.

If you signed up using a 3rd party account like Facebook or Twitter, please login with it instead.

Forgot password?

Try another email?

Almost done,

By becoming a registered user, you are also agreeing to our Terms and confirming that you have read our Privacy Policy.

Join Blazer's Edge

You must be a member of Blazer's Edge to participate.

We have our own Community Guidelines at Blazer's Edge. You should read them.

Join Blazer's Edge

You must be a member of Blazer's Edge to participate.

We have our own Community Guidelines at Blazer's Edge. You should read them.

Spinner.vc97ec6e

Authenticating

Great!

Choose an available username to complete sign up.

In order to provide our users with a better overall experience, we ask for more information from Facebook when using it to login so that we can learn more about our audience and provide you with the best possible experience. We do not store specific user data and the sharing of it is not required to login with Facebook.

tracking_pixel_9347_tracker