Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Kings always have one up their sleeves

The 2010 version of the Sacramento Kings is setting up to be quite interesting.

And it is just 15 games into the 82-game regular season. Already, the Kings have had major defensive, offensive and on-court chemistry issues.

Word is they’ve got a bunch of young talents, who are not showing an inclination to listen to the coaching staff or showing a collective dedication to hard work.

Until there is an acquisition of those two required traits, it will be difficult for the Kings (4-11) to maximize their strengths.

They’ve got 10 losses in their past 11 games entering tonight’s home game against the Indiana Pacers as an example of what not to do.

Other teams are experiencing problems of a similar nature to those of Sacramento. Consider the Miami Heat, a team many believed capable of contending for an NBA title this season after the free-agent signings of LeBron James and Chris Bosh and the re-signing of Dwayne Wade.

The Heat’s problems aren’t exactly like Sacramento’s, yet attempting to mesh its considerable talent into a consistent force is very much akin to what is going on here.

Tyreke Evans, last season’s Rookie of the Year, is struggling. Of all the problems one would have imagined, Evans having difficulty scoring was not one.

Yet, that’s been a major problem early into his second pro season.

First-round draft choice, DeMarcus Cousins, was tossed from practice Monday afternoon, reportedly for running his mouth to the coaching staff. Like Evans, Cousins has had problems scoring and is shooting just 38 percent from the field.

It’s likely these players are experiencing these difficulties for the first times in their lives.

The Kings are coming off a weekend home loss to the Chicago Bulls that displayed their season in a microcosm. Sacramento was superb during the first half while establishing a 57-44 lead.

The Kings held a 71-57 advantage with 3:23 left in the third before their game disintegrated into basketball mush.

Then their fourth-quarter performance was so putrid it had to be seen to be believed.

Sacramento made just three of 21 field-goal attempts, committed eight turnovers and was outscored, 27 to nine.

That nine-point mention is not a typographic error. The Kings scored nine points during 12 minutes despite having 29 possessions.

Coach Paul Westphal still is attempting to find the right combination of players to invest in basics. Moving the ball to the open man, covering for teammates defensively and following the team’s principles would be an excellent beginning.

No one is expecting the Kings to consistently perform at a playoff level. Yet, the Kings clearly can play better than they have.

Antoine Wright was waived Monday and Hasaan Whiteside was sent to the NBDL to play with Reno.

Kings president Geoff Petrie said the team doesn’t plan to add any more players in the short term.

“We’ve got to find a way of playing better together,” Petrie said Monday. “We’ve got to generate a more consistent offense.”

There is another one of those basics the Kings must adopt.


  1. What is the one up their sleeves? I thought you were going to say they have a plan maybe another player that they is in the works.

  2. Hopefully DMC said what so many of us fans have wanted to say to Westphal - that he's a clueless failure of a coach. No consistent rotation, playing players out of position, leaving players in the game that are stinking it up, taking out players that are doing decently... I'm not sure I can blame the kids for "not showing an inclination to listen to the coaching staff". The head coach seems like he's not showing an inclination to trying to improve the team. I'm saying all this as an outsider, of course, but it seems to me that even the casual observer could tell that Westphal's coaching is clearly flawed. A very significant portion of the "Yet, the Kings clearly can play better than they have" rests with him. This team has the talent to be much better, maybe even a 0.500+ team, but at this point I'm seriously wondering if they'll even get to 17 wins this year. They're playing like the worst team in the league, heading to another last-in-the-league finish, another 4th-overall lottery pick in the draft, and a one-way ticket out of Sacramento. Ok, of my rant...

  3. Last sentence above should say "Ok, end of my rant..."

  4. I disagree with Tracer. Its not the coach, at least not yet. We have been through a parade of coaches since we got rid of Rick Adleman. A new coach can't just snap his fingers and have everyone listen and perform. These are young players who need to learn lessons of the NBA. They need to learn how to mesh with other players and not be so damm selfish on the court. Evans and Landry dribble too much and yet they are considered our best. MOVE the ball Kings! To fire Westphall would be a disaster. When can we fire the players for not performing to the best of their abilities?! Or maybe dock their pay-now that would get them to perform! Anyway, count me in as a guy who thinks these athletes are to blame-not the coach. You got to give PW another year or two to establish his system. It doesn't happen overnight-it takes time to build a team.

  5. why is the coach the only one to get blamed? petrie has fired several coaches in his 16 years. remember st.jean,jordan,adelman,mussleman,theus,natt, and next westphal!