As an NBA team, the worst place you can be is in the middle of the pack.
If you're one of the four or five best teams, you possess and elite roster that is built to win it all. You look forward to making a deep playoff run, every game has meaning and it's quite likely you're one of the NBA's glamor franchises. Life is good.
If you're one of the four or five worst teams, you have hope for the future. You may have to suffer through countless losses, but the lottery happens every June and you're one of the teams with best odds of grabbing a franchise altering talent in the draft. The odds may not be great, but the hope is there. The notion that you have to get bad in order to get good is the prevailing wisdom of the day.
However, if you're one of the teams in the middle, there's really not a lot to get excited about. Yes, you have enough talent to compete on a nightly basis. Throughout the year you'll have some great wins that inspire thoughts you're moving in the right direction as an organization.
With that being said, being in the middle means you're essentially a team that's neither built to win it all nor put yourself in a position to get significantly better in the offseason. While there's a chance you can find a steal in the middle of the draft, find a way to trade your assets for a significantly better player or sign a marquee free agent, the chances are slim any of those things happen.
What you're left with is mediocrity. And in today's NBA that's not where you want to be.