Every so often, we here at FanSided like to gather up the heard and do a Network themed blog posting. Today, snowflakes, is one of those days.
With so much negativity surrounding the NBA lockout, it’s about time we look at something positive – our respective teams. Below, we’re going to look at five reasons to be optimistic about the Sacramento Kings, something given the current circumstances we shouldn’t find too much trouble in doing. So without further ado, let’s get to the listing:
#5) Arena situation/Lack of move – This one is pretty cut and dry. The Sacramento Kings are staying the Sacramento Kings, at least for this season (assuming there is one) and given the momentum that was stirred up by the Here We Stay fan movement along with the continual positive progress on the new arena front, it’s hard not to be excited about the Kings future in Sacramento. A few short months ago, the Maloof’s were pulling out their best early Halloween costumes, dressing up as the NBA’s version of Art Modell – the only thing missing were the moving trucks backed into the PBP loading docks. Now, the Maloof’s have taken a back seat (partly out of shame), the fans have made their voice heard, the community has come to the rescue and while it’s far from etched in stone, the Kings odds of staying in Sacramento seems to get better and better with each piece of positive news – a welcome change from the brash of negativity we were bombarded with not so long ago.
#4) Flying under the radar – Let’s face it, if there is a 2011/12 season, the Kings are still going to be a below average team. That’s not to say they wont have their moments, but, you can only expect so much from a team who’s average age is a few years past visiting their pediatricians. Expecting the Kings youth to come together and pull a 2009-10 Oklahoma City Thunder turnaround just isn’t realistic, but, the Kings aren’t far away from competing for a playoff spot in the aging Western Conference. Will it be this season? More likely than not, no – but the Kings returning to glory isn’t very far off at all.
#3) Addition of J.J. Hickson/Cap room – We all loved Omri Casspi. He was such a feel good story – one of the nicest guys you’ll ever come across and he played with a fire many wish they had burning deep inside – so a part of us all broke when we heard he was traded to Cleveland in exchange for J.J. Hickson. Many times, sport and emotion collide and this, much like previous trades of fan favorites, cuts deep. However, once the emotional baggage is removed, it’s clear the Kings acquired a huge upgrade in talent. J.J. Hickson, at only 23 (just 23, I might add), has all the abilities to be a stud in the NBA and for him, being removed from the shadow of Lebron will only enhance his career. Had he stayed in Cleveland, it’s difficult to say what path Hickson’s career would have went down. Fans expected him, right or wrong, to be the building block they needed after Lebron left the Cavs for dead. Hickson was the rumored reason so many trades were declined during James’ tenure in the Mistake By The Lake. The validity of those rumors, we’ll never know, but it’s safe to say Hickson’s removal from the situation was best for he and thankfully the Kings will be on the benefiting end.
In addition to Hickson, the Kings currently sit with the most cap room in the NBA and have a GM who’s been in this situation before. We all know what happened last time Geoff Petrie had some talented youth and money to play with. Needless to say, I’m pretty sure we’re all going to love the end result, no matter the new CBA.
#2) DeMarcus Cousins – Yes, I’ve been a big Cousins supporter since his days lacing them up for Big Blue. Call me a homer if you must, but how can you not be beyond impressed with Cousins’ ability? Let us not forget – this was a 20 year old big man who averaged 14/8.5 in his rookie season (and produced a line of 14/9/4 post All-Star break) in 28 minutes a game. Yes, he had some maturity issues – god forbid that happen. It’s not like Charles Barkley or Micheal Jordan ever had them or punched teammates. Oh wait. But I regress. Let’s think for just a moment – what if Cousins were to do what he did in Los Angeles or New York? Just sit back and imagine the hype for a 20 year old center who put up 14/9/4 on the Lakers or Knicks. Combine that with the extremely rare passing ability that Cousins possesses and the toned frame he’s brought to the Big Blue tour this off-season, it’s hard not to be enamored with his potential.
#1) A healthy Tyreke Evans – Lastly, we look at the Kings super-stud Tyreke Evans. More than anything, a return to Evans’ 09-10 Rookie of the Year form will be enough to claim the #1 reason for a Sacramento King fans optimism. Look – after a sluggish sophomore season (which statistically wasn’t that bad), many media personalities and fans have forgotten just how good Evans is. You don’t put up 20/5/5 (almost 6 assists) a game as a rookie, have your name mixed and matched with players such as Michael Jordan, LeBron James and Oscar Robertson and randomly fall from grace. For anybody that’s ever had an injury similar to Evans, you know not only just how debilitating it is but the lengthy recovery time. Make no mistake – Evans’ 2010-11 campaign was universally hampered by his injury – from decision making (overcompensating for inabilities brought on by injury) to on court statistics, what you saw was not the healthy Tyreke Evans you’ll see in the near future. Just think – you haven’t even seen a true Tyreke Evans play with DeMarcus Cousins. Now, you’ll get to see a bigger, stronger, smarter Cousins team with a healthy Tyreke Evans.
Somebody, anybody, get this lockout done. I have drooling to do. And I didn’t even get to Jimmer yet….