Basketball The Worst NBA Team Owners of All Time  

Ranker NBA
1.8k votes 543 voters 7.2k 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
254 48
Donald Sterling is listed (or ranked) 1 on the list The Worst NBA Team Owners of All Time
age 86 - Los Angeles Clippers

2
177 45
James L. Dolan is listed (or ranked) 2 on the list The Worst NBA Team Owners of All Time
age 63 - New York Knicks

3
115 43
Maloof family is listed (or ranked) 3 on the list The Worst NBA Team Owners of All Time
Sacramento Kings

4
97 37
Robert Sarver is listed (or ranked) 4 on the list The Worst NBA Team Owners of All Time
age 58 - Phoenix Suns

5
187 132
Michael Jordan is listed (or ranked) 5 on the list The Worst NBA Team Owners of All Time
age 56 - Charlotte Bobcats

6
53 28
Ted Stepien is listed (or ranked) 6 on the list The Worst NBA Team Owners of All Time
Ted Stepien

7
51 30
Clay Bennett is listed (or ranked) 7 on the list The Worst NBA Team Owners of All Time

8
43 26
Ted Leonsis is listed (or ranked) 8 on the list The Worst NBA Team Owners of All Time
age 62 - Washington Wizards

9
53 37
John Bitove is listed (or ranked) 9 on the list The Worst NBA Team Owners of All Time

10
42 28
Tom Benson is listed (or ranked) 10 on the list The Worst NBA Team Owners of All Time
age 92 - New Orleans Pelicans

11
30 19
Atlanta Spirit is listed (or ranked) 11 on the list The Worst NBA Team Owners of All Time
wiabux added Atlanta Hawks, LLC Atlanta Hawks

12
32 28
Joshua Harris is listed (or ranked) 12 on the list The Worst NBA Team Owners of All Time
Philadelphia 76ers

13
24 22
Michael Heisley is listed (or ranked) 13 on the list The Worst NBA Team Owners of All Time
Dec. at 77 (1937-2014) - Memphis Grizzlies

14
31 30
Chris Cohan is listed (or ranked) 14 on the list The Worst NBA Team Owners of All Time
Golden State Warriors

15
22 23
Greg Miller is listed (or ranked) 15 on the list The Worst NBA Team Owners of All Time
Greg Miller Utah Jazz

16
21 24
Glen Taylor is listed (or ranked) 16 on the list The Worst NBA Team Owners of All Time
age 78 - Minnesota Timberwolves

17
19 25
George Shinn is listed (or ranked) 17 on the list The Worst NBA Team Owners of All Time
age 78 - New Orleans Hornets