Posts Tagged ‘kings’

By Will Robinson

Well, unfortunately, this piece was going to branch off into a Kings tirade as well as tying in some free agent transactions; however, since there is a lockout and all, I will stick to the Kings moves pre-July 1.

 

Look, I don’t need to place the disclaimer, but: I’ve been a lifelong Kings fan. I only want what’s best for their chances to win games. And to put it bluntly, the moves they have made in recent years were mostly poor for the team’s direction.

 

Ever since they traded off Chris Webber, Peja Stojakovic, Mike Bibby, and all of the other usual suspects from the glory days, the message was assumed the Kings would be rebuilding. The problem was they kept bringing in mid-level free agents that kept the Kings right in the 35-win range. They didn’t bottom out. They were just average. Rebuilding ACTUALLY started the year they finished 17-65.

 

In recent years, they have made some solid pickups such as drafting Tyreke Evans, DeMarcus Cousins, and acquiring Marcus Thornton for Carl Landry, as well as some other ones (Dalembert, Greene – depending how you feel about him). But the first two they made this offseason really bothered me. A lot.

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By Will Robinson

 

Last Tuesday, Russell and I had the privilege to attend the #HereWeRally event at Cesar Chavez Park in Sacramento, to celebrate the Kings staying in Sacramento. Take a look at some of the pictures from the event I took:

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By Will Robinson

photos

Yes, the relocations talks have been hovering all over the team. Yes, there is now a public pissing match between the owners and the city of Sacramento, but despite all of that, the Sacramento Kings are playing their best overall ball of the year. They have won five of their last six (the lone loss being a blowout in Chicago), including going 4-1 on a five game road trip. There have been some interesting developments going on with the team, so I will highlight a few that I have noticed (and extrapolate from some box scores).

 

Rebounding

The Kings have DESTROYED in rebounding. They have averaged 48.5 RPG, which would be the top number in the league; however, they are already the third best team in the league rebounding wise. The difference? Rebounds allowed. 37.3 RAPG (Rebounds Allowed per Game). The difference of 11.2 RPG difference is a dominant mark, which is double than the season high average per game (Chicago, with +5.6 RPG).

 

Samuel Dalembert’s Hot Streak

Samuel Dalembert Sacramento Kings v New York 5xyQVWCc1KllDalembert was acquired for his defense and rebounding, but he has been lighting up the stats sheet with his scoring. He actually hasn’t done much during this streak (12.5 PPG), but before the Timberwolves game, he had been putting up good numbers. For comparison, his season average is 7.8 PPG. Slammin’ Sammy has been dominant on the boards, pulling down 12 a game: 4.3 above his season average. DeMarcus Cousins has been inconsistent during this six game stretch, but the play of Dalembert in the middle has kept the Kings rolling. Speaking of another big…

 

The De-Slumpification of Jason Thompson

Thompson struggled enormously over the month of March, but has come on stronger during these six games. He had one big stinker performance (Bulls game), but has produced good rebounding numbers, as well as a solid percentage shooting (50%), slightly above his season average (48.7%). He’s played well recently, but he has been too hot and cold to jump on the bandwagon yet.

 

Marcus Thornton

Since joining the Kings back in February, Thornton has lit up the scoreboard. Obviously, in limited time, 18 games, Thornton has posted career high averages in practically category. Since Tyreke Evans had been out, Thornton has been the primary scorer, particularly over this stretch, in which he is averaging 24.3 PPG. He has looked absolutely great and unstoppable at times, and has been the Kings best player as of late. He has succeeded very well without Evans in the lineup, which was a concern of mine; they have played well in the three games with Evans’ return. With Evans coming off the bench, he has received limited minutes and has become more of the game manager I doubt he could be. Granted, it has only been three games, but he messed around and ALMOST got a triple double against Phoenix last night (11-10-8). The Kings would be fools not to resign Thornton.

 

I believe the future for the (location in question) Kings/Royals is particularly bright, especially if they can finish this season off strong. They need five more wins to top last year’s total, and with another lottery pick, should have a nice core of talent for the future. I clearly hope the Kings stay in town, but it’s not looking too good, especially with the dire situation with the letter to Anaheim and all. Let’s focus on now, though: beat the Nuggets tonight!