After the promise of the 1997-98 season, the team finished 31-51 and missed the playoffs for a second consecutive year. During the 1999-2000 season, several Nets reached different milestones. Stephon Marbury dished out his 2,000th assist and Kendall Gill scored his 10,000th career point. Stephon Marbury led the team in scoring (22.2 ppg) and Kendall Gill led the team in total steals (139), ranking him ninth in the league.
The Nets started the season at 2-15, a franchise record low. Despite the poor start, the Nets rallied back to compete for a playoff spot. The Nets were still alive in the playoff race at the beginning of April with three weeks left in the season. After the first week of April, the team was without their leading scorer, Stephon Marbury, who struggled with knee injuries. Other injuries included rookie Evan Eschmeyer (ankle), and starting shooting guard Kerry Kittles (knee). The Nets were officially eliminated from playoff contention on April 7 after a 103-85 loss to the Miami Heat. The team finished the season by losing their final 11 games of the year. Center Jayson Williams was out injured for the entire season, and then retired.