Judging how a team will fare based on its performance in the preseason—when players and coaches are trying to familiarize themselves with one another, and the best players have their minutes reduced in favor of guys who may or may not be on the roster in one month—is both difficult and imprudent.
Preseason basketball is nothing like the regular season. It's a test tube experiment where coaches deploy unconventional methods in an effort to see what they have. Wins and losses are dismissed as a low priority, and new players in new environments aren't even close to identifying their roles.
For this article we're throwing all that out the window. Even though the games "don't matter," two teams are still out there competing against one another, and some are playing better than others.
In the grand scheme of things, this is insignificant (if the Miami Heat failed to outscore their opponent at the end of every quarter this preseason, their championship odds wouldn't move a millimeter), but in the short term there might be bits of information hiding in the mud.
Here are five teams that haven't been playing their best, ranked by their preseason expectations.