Thursday, July 22, 2010

Petrie says Kings will add guards soon

Kings President Geoff Petrie and head coach Paul Westphal went to Las Vegas Thursday morning to see second-year star guard Tyreke Evans.

Evans is hoping to land a spot on the USA Basketball squad that participates in the 2010 World Championships. Evans, however, sprained his left ankle earlier this week and it's difficult to impress when your best move is to the ice bag.

Petrie said the team is edging closer to adding to its backcourt after a Vegas Summer League during which it went 4-2.

"We'd like to add a couple of backcourt players," Petrie said, "and we're pretty probably getting closer to doing that. After that, we'll see what falls the rest of the summer and maybe even fall camp."

Petrie said the additions will come from free-agent signings.

Free-agency always is a game of chess where players and agents attempt to get as much money, then available playing time, usually in that order. Teams are attempting to find the best fit for their team chemistry while as Petrie described it, "keeping our future salary cap clean."

The Kings should look to free-agent combination guard Shannon Brown. He just won two championship rings with the Los Angeles Lakers, but the 24-year-old may have seen his spot taken with the signings of Matt Barnes and Steve Blake and the re-signing of veteran Derek Fisher.

Brown can play both guard positions and has the potential to become a contributor in the mold of a young Bobby Jackson. That may not be the case, Brown's abilities to handle and shoot from the perimeter are improving. That's kind of player the Kings, who are thinking about 'that clean cap', would be lucky to add.

Petrie said the trade of popular power forward Jon Brockman to the Milwaukee Bucks for power forward Darnell Jackson also was a by-product of that financial goal.

Clearly, Brockman would have had a difficult time earning playing time with the additions of Samuel Dalembert, Cousins and Hasaan Whiteside.

Since Jackson plays the same position as Brockman, it would figure he will have the same playing time challenges.

"He's a tough-minded guy," Petrie said of Jackson, 25, "who hasn't had too much of a chance to play. He had a pretty good career at (the University of) Kansas."

Petrie could have used the same description for Brockman, so there is more to find out regarding the trade. Had the Kings acquired a guard, the reasons behind the trade would be more clear.

Petrie pointed to the additional acquisition of a second-round pick. Perhaps that along with a Brockman replacement is enough reason to make a deal. Perhaps the Kings see a higher ceiling with Jackson than they did with Brockman.

I still see more to the deal than meets the eyes and ears right now.

Center DeMarcus Cousins showed glimpses of stardom in three summer league games. Cousins also displayed perhaps the league's leading sad puppy dog face when things went against him.

That was enough for some observers to predict his emotional makeup will prevent him from fulfilling his potential.

What I saw is perhaps the NBA's most talented 19-year-old (20 on, Aug. 13). All day long, give me the talent and let me work with the puppy-dog face, too.

"He was mediocre in one other game and he struggled in two of them," Petrie said of Cousins, 19. "It was one step along the way and there's no reason why we should think he's going to be anything else but a very good player."


  1. I have no idea why the Kings traded Brockman but it seems to me that given he got a three year deal and the Kings really don't see him as a "three year deal" worthy player they did right by the kid?

    When it comes to Cousins? Well let's be honest he did not slip a few spots in the draft because every other team is that stupid. The kid has some flaws but nothing that looks to stop him from being a heck of a player. Barkley had an attitude, still does, and that never stopped him from doing his thing on the court. Hopefully he can grow along with the other young Kings and they can learn to feed off each other. Evans is the leader so his first leadership task is to learn when to step for the big man and talk to the refs so Cousins doesn't get in trouble.

  2. I'm still waiting on a call back from Bucks VP John Hammond. I believe that will shed much needed light on the Brockman situation. I was thinking multi-year contract as well.

    If you think about it, where Cousins is concerned, the Kings didn't need every other team to be stupid, four at the most. I can't say I'd have passed on John Wall, so that drops the number down to three.

    Stupid, yes, is one option. Scared is another. And one other option is insecure, yet not somewhat desperate. The Kings were somewhat desperate and willing to take a big swing because they needed to make a big talent addition with the fifth pick.

    So one person's gamble on immaturity was another's roll on a major talent that will require work. I'd personally have done the same thing. Cousins can become a star and it's up to the Kings to help him make it happen.