Basketball The Worst NBA Team Owners of All Time  

Ranker NBA
1.7k votes 515 voters 6.8k views 17 items

List Rules Only the worst owners in professional basketball.

The worst NBA team owners of all time are those well-intentioned men with thick pockets who purchased a National Basketball Association team with dreadful results. All of these NBA team owners found success in other things in life like business or even as an NBA player but when it came to operating a professional basketball team, they failed miserably.

Having watched his Charlotte Bobcats record the statistically worst season in NBA history, Michael Jordan is often regarded as the worst NBA owner of all time. Though arguably the best NBA player of all time, Jordan didn't just struggle as an owner of the Bobcats but also showed that his front office leadership skills could use some improvement following his less than great performance with the Washington Wizards.

While most will agree that Jordan's performance as an NBA team owner gets a failing grade, many other so-called bad NBA team owners on this list fall into the love them or hate them category. Fans may love that John Bitlove brought the NBA to Toronto while others may fault him for his disastrous hiring of Isaiah Thomas. It's easy to hate on Donald Sterling, owner of the Los Angeles Clippers, or James Dolan, who writes the checks for the New York Knicks, but many fans can see past the trying times and look forward to what these owners are doing to turn their clubs around.

Optimists might give a case that these men are in some weird way among the best NBA team owners of all time, most would disagree. Which NBA team owner is the worst? Tell us by voting, adding those not listed or re-ranking this list of the worst NBA team owners of all time.
list ordered by

1
241 46
Donald Sterling is listed (or ranked) 1 on the list The Worst NBA Team Owners of All Time
age 85 - Los Angeles Clippers

2
168 42
James L. Dolan is listed (or ranked) 2 on the list The Worst NBA Team Owners of All Time
age 62 - New York Knicks

3
111 41
Maloof family is listed (or ranked) 3 on the list The Worst NBA Team Owners of All Time
Sacramento Kings

4
93 36
Robert Sarver is listed (or ranked) 4 on the list The Worst NBA Team Owners of All Time
age 57 - Phoenix Suns

5
180 126
Michael Jordan is listed (or ranked) 5 on the list The Worst NBA Team Owners of All Time
age 55 - Charlotte Bobcats

6
53 26
Ted Stepien is listed (or ranked) 6 on the list The Worst NBA Team Owners of All Time
Ted Stepien

7
51 28
Clay Bennett is listed (or ranked) 7 on the list The Worst NBA Team Owners of All Time

8
42 24
Ted Leonsis is listed (or ranked) 8 on the list The Worst NBA Team Owners of All Time
age 61 - Washington Wizards

9
52 35
John Bitove is listed (or ranked) 9 on the list The Worst NBA Team Owners of All Time

10
29 16
Atlanta Spirit is listed (or ranked) 10 on the list The Worst NBA Team Owners of All Time
wiabux added Atlanta Spirit Atlanta Hawks

11
40 28
Tom Benson is listed (or ranked) 11 on the list The Worst NBA Team Owners of All Time
age 91 - New Orleans Pelicans

12
31 26
Joshua Harris is listed (or ranked) 12 on the list The Worst NBA Team Owners of All Time
Philadelphia 76ers

13
24 20
Michael Heisley is listed (or ranked) 13 on the list The Worst NBA Team Owners of All Time
Died at 77 (1937-2014) - Memphis Grizzlies

14
31 28
Chris Cohan is listed (or ranked) 14 on the list The Worst NBA Team Owners of All Time
Golden State Warriors

15
22 21
Greg Miller is listed (or ranked) 15 on the list The Worst NBA Team Owners of All Time
Greg Miller Utah Jazz

16
20 22
Glen Taylor is listed (or ranked) 16 on the list The Worst NBA Team Owners of All Time
age 77 - Minnesota Timberwolves

17
18 23
George Shinn is listed (or ranked) 17 on the list The Worst NBA Team Owners of All Time
age 77 - New Orleans Hornets