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Jazz and Sixers have both fallen far from grace

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Remember the good times, but plan to actually make more good times in the near future . . .

Elsa/Getty Images

In 1997 and 1998 the Utah Jazz went to the NBA Finals, but lost both times. A few seasons later the Philadelphia 76ers went to the NBA Finals in 2001, and also lost. Powered by creative and engaged owners, and led by old school coaches like Jerry Sloan and Larry Brown these two teams were at their modern era peaks around the same time. John Stockton, Karl Malone, Allen Iverson, and Dikembe Mutombo are all Hall of Famers -- or will be when they become eligible. And while the teams played contrasting styles on offense, their back bone was defense and playing a 'control' game. It wasn't about running up and down the court shooting threes. It was a different time. A different game. But ultimately, two franchises that were the backdrop for another team's celebrations.

Philly has a glorious past, with championships and larger than life players. Utah has none, but holds themselves to a higher level of sustained good play over the years in the Western Conference. Last season both teams were in the lotto race and clearly have fell very far from grace.

Despite being in a larger market, the Sixers have put a lot of stock in their lotto / draft basket. Has have the Jazz. Utah went hard with Derrick Favors, Gordon Hayward, Enes Kanter, Alec Burks, Trey Burke, Rudy Gobert, and now Dante Exum and Rodney Hood. The retention rate has been pretty high. Philly went with Jrue Holiday, Evan Turner, Nikola Vucevic, Maurice Harkless, Michael Carter-Williams, Nerlens Noel, Dario Saric, and Joel Embiid. Time will tell which group is ultimately more successful, or even with the team in five years.

But today we can see the shared sorrow of both teams.

Win Percentage over time:

Season UTA PHI
1 1997 1998 75.6% Jerry Sloan 37.8% Larry Brown
2 1998 1999 74.0% Jerry Sloan 56.0% Larry Brown
3 1999 2000 67.1% Jerry Sloan 59.8% Larry Brown
4 2000 2001 64.6% Jerry Sloan 68.3% Larry Brown
5 2001 2002 53.7% Jerry Sloan 52.4% Larry Brown
6 2002 2003 57.3% Jerry Sloan 58.5% Larry Brown
7 2003 2004 51.2% Jerry Sloan 40.2% Randy Ayres, Chris Ford
8 2004 2005 31.7% Jerry Sloan 52.4% Jim O'Brien
9 2005 2006 50.0% Jerry Sloan 46.3% Maurice Cheeks
10 2006 2007 62.2% Jerry Sloan 42.7% Maurice Cheeks
11 2007 2008 65.9% Jerry Sloan 48.8% Maurice Cheeks
12 2008 2009 58.5% Jerry Sloan 50.0% Maurice Cheeks, Tony DiLeo
13 2009 2010 64.6% Jerry Sloan 32.9% Eddie Jordan
14 2010 2011 47.6% Jerry Sloan, Tyrone Corbin 50.0% Doug Collins
15 2011 2012 54.5% Tyrone Corbin 53.0% Doug Collins
16 2012 2013 52.4% Tyrone Corbin 41.5% Doug Collins
17 2013 2014 30.5% Tyrone Corbin 23.2% Brett Brown
18 2014 2015 40.0% Quin Snyder 21.3% Brett Brown

2014 2105 Game 061 UTA at PHI History Win Percentage

Stability can be a benefit and a curse. But nothing is more of a curse than having a bad front office. Utah is in a steeper climb right now, but we hope that Philly returns to glory in time as well.

Let's remember the good times, though:

Just so everyone knows that Malone vid ends at the 3:00 min mark, I don't know why it keeps going for another 40 seconds after that.