Coming into the season (and even shortly after it began), outside of Carl Landry, Beno Udrih and Samuel Dalembert appeared to be the most logical Kings to be traded at some point during the season. Dalembert’s expiring contract seemed to have some outside value as did his overall big man game in a league lacking those and Beno Udrih’s improved play certainly warranted interest from contending teams looking for a backup point guard who could score.
But as the Kings have improved their play on the court (despite the lack of wins), the two biggest catalysts have been the play of Udrih and Dalembert.
In the past two months, Udrih has averaged over 15 points a game, 4 assists, 4 rebounds, mid 40’s from the arc, and 53% from the field. He most certainly wont be winning any awards for his on ball defense, but you always see Udrih hustle back into plays and he’s broken up a considerable amount of fast break opportunities throughout the season. The Udrih you might have been frustrated with two years ago for pissing and moaning appears to have grown up.
Dalembert on the other hand hasn’t been given near the floor time that Udrih has seen until very recently, but he’s been extremely effective on the defensive end and has even shown bits and pieces of offense, especially with some nifty passing skills appearing as of late.
With Evans struggles this season, the Kings offense has become almost dependent on Udrih – as Udrih goes, usually so does the Kings offense. And if Dalembert can get any help on the perimeter, he has the ability to lock down the paint as we’ve seen recently.
Is that to say Udrih or Dalembert wouldn’t be involved in a large deal? Of course not – but trading them because one might be viewed as overpaid (Udrih) or because one has an expiring contract doesn’t really seem to be in the Kings best benefit as it might have been a few months ago.
If you’re looking for a trade King fans, think Carl Landry – not Udrih or Dalembert.
The returns aren’t out there. The Kings need experience and time. Patience young grasshoppers, patience.