The 2013-14 season may be over for the majority of teams in the NBA, but there are a handful of teams that made significant strides during the 2013-14 season. For these teams, the future is bright and the 2014-15 season cannot come fast enough. Let’s take a look at five teams poised to make a significant leap in 2014-15:
5. Charlotte Hornets (Formerly the Bobcats)
The Bobcats made significant strides during the 2013-14 season as they improved their win total by 22 games from the 2012-13 season. The Bobcats finished with a record of 43-39 and secured a playoff berth in the Eastern Conference. They may have been quickly bounced by the Miami Heat in four games, but that does not diminish the positives the Bobcats can take from the 2013-14 season.
The Bobcats’ turnaround took place in large part to the improvements that Charlotte made defensively. The Bobcats transformed their team on the defensive side of the ball, jumping from No. 29 in points allowed in 2012-13 to No. 4 in points allowed last season. The Bobcats are projected to have $14-17 million in salary cap space and they could improve again next season with a significant free agent addition.
Head coach Steve Clifford has transformed the atmosphere in Charlotte and the players have followed his lead. Kemba Walker and Al Jefferson lead a Charlotte team that should continue to grow and improve in 2014-15.