(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?
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.