2 Teams challenging the Pistons for NBA's most depressing franchise

Charlotte Hornets v Detroit Pistons
Charlotte Hornets v Detroit Pistons / Nic Antaya/GettyImages

Lately, the social media ecosystem around the Detroit Pistons has taken a sad and familiar turn.

Fans are tapping out in droves, making bold promises (I won't watch until Troy Weaver is fired! Sure.) and have generally hit rock bottom along with the team, which has the worst record in the NBA for the second straight year.

The Pistons have some reason for hope. They have a young star in Cade Cunningham (though they have to find a way to keep him healthy), promising prospects in Jalen Duren, Ausar Thompson, Jaden Ivey and Isaiah Stewart to go with a heap of cap space that at least provides a glimmer of optimism.

But if we're being honest, they are a lost team with no clear path to being good, a depressing thought considering this is year four of the Troy Weaver "restoration."

Related Story. Proposed draft trade to shake up the Pistons core. Proposed draft trade to shake up the Pistons core. dark

The Pistons aren't the only team hitting new lows this season and may even have some competition for the title of league's most depressing franchise.

The Detroit Pistons: Challengers for the title of most depressing franchise

Charlotte Hornets

The Hornets announced that star LaMelo Ball will miss the rest of the season, which was not a surprise, as they are 18-54 and have little left to play for. Ball has played just 58 games in the last two seasons combined and his massive five-year extension hasn't even kicked in yet.

The Hornets did hit on two-way wing Brandon Miller, so there is some hope there but otherwise, it's pretty grim in Charlotte.

Their other talented youngster, center Mark Williams has played 62 games combined in two seasons and I don't see much else on the roster to get excited about.

The worst part is that the Hornets are pretty much locked into their current team, as they have at least 10 players under contract for next season and could bring back free-agent domestic abuser Miles Bridges as their big offseason signing. Try not to have a parade, Charlotte.

The good news is that other than Ball, most of those guys are on fairly team-friendly contracts, so they could be moved to create more cap space for the Hornets.

If LaMelo Ball can get himself sorted, they at least have a very good young duo, but if not, they are an even bigger mess than the Pistons, though both teams could use a better run of health for their young core.

Washington Wizards

The Wizards are like the Hornets but with even less young talent. It's hard to look at Washington's roster and get excited about anything other than the promise of Deni Avdija, who is quietly having a nice season for the Wiz.

Washington will be paying Kyle Kuzma, Jordan Poole, Marvin Bagley III and Landrey Shamet a combined $75 million next season, ouch. That's the lion's share of their cap space wrapped up in guys who are role players at best.

Like the Pistons and Hornets, the Wizards will have a high pick in an unheralded 2024 draft to go along with some cap space, but the core of the team is rotten and other than MBIII, all of those players are locked in for at least two more seasons after this one.

The Wizards could trade Kuzma and garner some assets, but Poole, who is one of the most unserious players in the league, is locked into three more seasons after this one and has a contract no one is going to touch without serious assets attached to it.

So good news, Pistons fans! We aren't the only ones whose franchise drives them to drink, which is a small consolation. At least we are not the Wizards I guess, which is something.