Friday, November 9, 2012

Kings need to share the ball - NOW!

It’s early in the NBA season, but not too early to be embarrassed. The Kings need to recognize right now they will not become winners playing like they are. The Kings are 30th in assists with 15.6 per game. That’s last in the league. That’s embarrassing. That statistic indicates a couple of factors. The most glaring indicator is that the Kings stink at moving the ball and hitting the open man. Some, if not all of their coaches believe the players are playing selfishly. Ranking last in assists suggests they don’t understand that sharing the ball is the gateway to offensive success, easier shot attempts, more pressure on opposing defenses. Moreover, if the Kings want to have individual success, acclaim and respect, it will come by playing as a team. Head coach Keith Smart points to the number of open shots his players are missing. There is a modicum of truth there. However, too many of those shots are off balance or forced. These often are attempts that can be improved by exhibiting more patience and faith that the next man will make the shot. Sacramento is tied with Detroit at 24th in scoring at 92.8. The Kings are 5th in field-goal attempts at 87.6 per game, but rank 25th in field-goal percentage at .411. Hitting the open man is a selfless concept the Kings soon need to make part of their repertoire. It’s more contagious than the flu. And it has to start with their primary scorers. DeMarcus Cousins, Marcus Thornton and Tyreke Evans are most prominent when it comes to forcing shots. Each consistently draws a lot of defensive attention and can make plays for others. They have shown the ability and desire to do so. Now they do it more often. And to say players are performing selfishly does not mean they are selfish. Yes, there is some of that, but to me it’s more of a sign, that they don’t see the big picture. They don’t truly trust their brothers. Until they do, offensive mediocrity will be their calling card.


  1. The most glaring indicator is that the Kings stink at moving the ball and hitting the open man.

    Truer words have rarely been spoken. When's the last time the Kings made four crisp passes to find the open man for a bucket? Can't think of it because the answer is never.

  2. I'm not as optimistic that offensive fluidity can be attained with this group of players. Thornton, Evans, Cousins, Brooks - these guys have always been shoot first players. They could have young Pete Carril coaching them and they'd still average 15 assists. What the team needs is more unselfish distributors like Chuck Hayes. They need high basketball iq players who can pass and make good decisions.

  3. The lack of sharing the ball is the motivation for the "Free Jimmer" movement. Jimmer would thrive with a team like the Spurs, Sacramento has become a graveyard for talented players.

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