The Kings made the playoffs – these teams now have the longest postseason droughts

(NEXSTAR) – Their current point guard was just 8 years old and George W. Bush was president the last time the NBA’s Sacramento Kings made the playoffs.

After a dismal 12th-place finish just one year earlier, the Kings, behind new head coach Mike Brown, completed a stunning turnaround and clinched a top-four seed in the playoffs.

“We want to do bigger things, but 16 years — that’s a long time,” star Kings point guard De’Aaron Fox said.

The team’s 16-year playoff drought was the longest in NBA history and the longest active postseason dry spell among teams in the NBA, NFL, NHL and Major League Baseball.

So which fan bases can now claim to be the most tortured?

EAST RUTHERFORD, NJ – NOVEMBER 12: A New York Jets fan looks dejected during the game against the Buffalo Bills at MetLife Stadium on November 12, 2015 in East Rutherford, New Jersey. The Buffalo Bills defeated the New York Jets 22-17. (Photo by Elsa/Getty Images)

1. New York Jets (12 years)

J-E-T-S, Jets, Jets, Jets! Fans of the beleaguered franchise have been fruitlessly chanting Gang Green on for a dozen years now. This past season they seemed destined to break the streak, until their phenom rookie Breece Hall suffered a season-ending injury.

PHILADELPHIA, PENNSYLVANIA – MARCH 17: Owen Power #25 of the Buffalo Sabres skates against the Philadelphia Flyers at the Wells Fargo Center on March 17, 2023 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. (Photo by Bruce Bennett/Getty Images)

2. Buffalo Sabres (11 years)

Sabres fans have survived a decade of misery and are hoping to have a chance, no matter how slim, at the Stanley Cup this year.

SEATTLE, WASHINGTON – MAY 17: Miguel Cabrera #24 of the Detroit Tigers gestures toward a fan as he was walked during the first inning against the Seattle Mariners at T-Mobile Park on May 17, 2021 in Seattle, Washington. (Photo by Steph Chambers/Getty Images)

T-3. Detroit Tigers (8 years)

Miguel Cabrera (pictured above) remembers the last time the Tigers made the playoffs since he was on the team, but young fans born after 2014 have no idea what it’s like for games to continue after the regular season ends.

ANAHEIM, CA – OCTOBER 20: An Angel fan looks dejected in Game Four of the ALCS between the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim and the New York Yankees during the 2009 MLB Playoffs at Angel Stadium on October 20, 2009 in Anaheim, California. (Photo by Stephen Dunn/Getty Images)

T-3. Los Angeles Angels (8 years)

Despite having had one of the greatest sluggers in the game in Mike Trout, Angels fans are also closing in on a decade without rolling out the red, white and blue bunting.

KANSAS CITY, MISSOURI – JUNE 28: A Kansas City Royals fan wears bag over his head during the game against the Texas Rangers Kauffman Stadium on June 28, 2022 in Kansas City, Missouri. (Photo by Kyle Rivas/Getty Images)

T-5 Kansas City Royals (7 years)

Royals fans who watched their team down the New York Mets to win the World Series in 2015 had no idea that it would be their last postseason appearance for the next seven seasons.

LOS ANGELES, CALIFORNIA – AUGUST 17: Yoshi Tsutsugo #32 of the Pittsburgh Pirates dives for the ball and makes a fielding error against the Los Angeles Dodgers during the fourth inning at Dodger Stadium on August 17, 2021 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Michael Owens/Getty Images)

T-5 Pittsburgh Pirates (7 years)

If you think seven years is rough, the Pittsburgh Pirates snapped a soul-crushing 21-year playoff drought in 2013.

CHARLOTTE, NC – APRIL 26: Fans wait for the start of Game Three of the Eastern Conference Quarterfinals between the Miami Heat and the Charlotte Bobcats during the 2014 NBA Playoffs at Time Warner Cable Arena on April 26, 2014 in Charlotte, North Carolina. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. (Photo by Grant Halverson/Getty Images)

T-5 Charlotte Hornets (7 years)

The Charlotte Hornets have taken the baton from the Sacramento Kings as the NBA franchise with the longest-running playoff drought. Could LaMelo Ball herald a new era and a return to the playoffs? Time will tell.

DENVER, CO – SEPTEMBER 23: A fan of the Denver Broncos looks on as they are defeated by the Houston Texans at Sports Authority Field at Mile High on September 23, 2012 in Denver, Colorado. The Texans defeated the Broncos 31-25. (Photo by Doug Pensinger/Getty Images)

T-5 Denver Broncos (7 years)

When Russell Wilson arrived in Denver from Seattle, where he had tortured opposing teams for years as the quarterback of the Seahawks, he coined a catchphrase that soured almost as soon as the season began: “Let’s ride.” Should the Jets manage to make it to the playoffs with a healthy Breece Hall and possibly a new, ahem, veteran quarterback this upcoming season, the Broncos would assume the dubious title of longest-tortured NFL fanbase.


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