The Sacramento Kings: A Team With No Holes?


Well this is a nice surprise for the Sacramento Kings. Last season they had just about the worst bench in the entire NBA. Now Vlade Divac has built one of the deepest squads around the Association. This Kings team may actually have no real obvious holes.

More from Kings News

For the purpose of this article we’ll call a hole a position where were an injury to occur the entire team would be thrown off fairly badly. An example last season for the Kings is when DeMarcus Cousins got hurt, or when Darren Collison got hurt.

Those injuries made it so players like Ray McCallum and Carl Landry had to step into starting roles, and although Landry didn’t play too poorly McCallum–and the entire Kings team–suffered. One injury that didn’t end up harming the Kings too much was when Rudy Gay missed time, because Omri Casspi was waiting in the wings as a very capable backup.

This season, all five positions have at least one player who is more than capable enough to step into a starting role if necessary. Darren Collison at point or shooting guard, Marco Belinelli at shooting guard or small forward, Omri Casspi at small forward or power forward and Kosta Koufos at center.

That depth is more than solid, and the positional fluidity of some of those role players makes the bench even better. Guys like Collison and Belinelli can come in and play a couple positions, meaning that guys like Rajon Rondo, who are limited to one position, can always be in the best possible spot for them to succeed.

Having a deep team with no holes is about more than just the first nine or ten guys on the team, however. Having around twelve players who have some sort of talent who you can trust to put in games helps keep everybody rested, and the Kings bench goes at least that far this season.

Just listing off the players that Sacramento can send out there when necessary is pretty remarkable. Obviously you have the starting five of Rondo, Ben McLemore, Gay, either Koufos or Willie Cauley-Stein and Cousins. That’s five players really, with one of the two power forwards ending up as a great bench contributor.

Then you have Collison, Belinelli, Casspi and the other of either WCS and Koufos. That’s nine players, and a fairly deep team. Then the Kings can also trot out Seth Curry, Caron Butler, Quincy Acy, Eric Moreland and James Anderson. These guys may not be starter quality, but they can pick up bench minutes to be sure. That makes 14 deep, or at least twelve even if you count out Moreland and Anderson.

Those extra three NBA-quality guys make a real difference. Some of the success the Golden State Warriors enjoyed last year in their title run was due to not having many major injuries over the course of the season. One reason they missed the injury bug was the fact that guys like Stephen Curry didn’t have to play that many minutes.

Curry played 80 games last season, but just 2,613 minutes. To put that in perspective, fellow All-Star guard James Harden played 81 games and logged 2,981 minutes in his runner-up MVP campaign. One more game, but 368 more minutes. And it showed throughout the playoffs, when Curry was fresh and ready to go and Harden looked clearly tired at times.

That difference came from Golden State having a very deep team, and the Rockets not having enough depth to survive injuries without asking Harden to completely carry them night in and night out.

This deep Kings team should be well-equipped to get Cousins and the rest of the starters some necessary rest without completely sacrificing leads and close games, thanks to Vlade Divac building a very solid team with no obvious holes.

More from A Royal Pain

Next: Could The Cousins-Karl Partnership Really Work?