The Sacramento Kings Current Problem & The Issue They’re Facing Going Forward


It is extremely early in the season, but the Sacramento Kings are treading in troubled water far too soon. The three at home losses to Western Conference powerhouses aren’t the concern (to the Grizzlies & twice to the Clippers). The Kings were beaten by better teams, and fans can hang their heads on that without a problem.

A quick glance ahead shows them playing Houston, Golden State, San Antonio, and a vastly improved Detroit squad before getting a somewhat less of a challenge in Brooklyn, and then facing Toronto, Atlanta, & Miami.

Out of the next 8 games, the Kings will be facing 6 perennial playoff teams, 4 of which are expected to compete for the top spot of their respective conferences, and if anything, challenge for the NBA titile.

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Here goes the sentence that all Kings fans have feared since the tip off of the season;

We are looking at a real possibility of the Kings beginning the year at 2-11, or even worse, 1-12.

The problem isn’t losing to teams that on paper and in reality have better rosters than we do, the issue is that the Kings are lost on the court. For all intents and purposes, they are the Jon Snow’s of the NBA; they know nothing.

Don’t watch Game of Thrones or understand the reference?  Here, I’ll spell it out for you, the Kings looked bad against the Grizzlies, and worse against the Suns-a team in which they are going to absolutely have to finish better than in order to get into the playoffs.

The Kings only win of the season was against a Lakers squad that (this is painful, but true), looks to be competing early with Philadelphia towards “trusting the process”, which translated from NBA talk means “tank the season, lose as many games as possible and pray to god we get the #1 pick in the draft.”

If you’re proud of the win against the Lakers, that’s fine, I can accept that. I too am an Oakland Raiders fan, and understand how few and far apart wins can come when you’re cheering for a squad that breaks your heart in an epic, Miley Cyrus-esque, Wrecking (basket) Ball fashion.

However, here at “A Royal Pain” we like to take the James Harrison approach to mediocrity, and expect to achieve success and celebrate only when deemed necessary. The Lakers win doesn’t mean a damn thing, and with the stretch ahead the Kings need to get it together before the National Media rears its ugly head down Interstate 80 towards Sleep Train Arena (it’ll always be ARCO to me), and starts sprouting trade rumors & coaching change gossip.

The issue isn’t losing games. Like I said before, losing to better teams can be accepted. The Kings need to be winning the games that they play against teams with similar or lesser talent levels; meaning, they should have beat the Suns and better beat the Nets on November 13th, or panic mode might completely set in.

Mar 16, 2015; Sacramento, CA, USA; Sacramento Kings Vice President of basketball and franchise operations Vlade Divac looks on during the game against the Atlanta Hawks at Sleep Train Arena. The Atlanta Hawks defeated the Sacramento Kings 110-103. Mandatory Credit: Ed Szczepanski-USA TODAY Sports

The Kings will no doubt take more L’s than Meek Mill has with Drake during this flat out ugly stretch that the NBA has blessed our team with. What is important and necessary is to create an identity during this process. Over the first 5 games of the season, the Kings have lost, and looked bad doing it. Screw Billy Hoyle, lets take a lesson from Sidney Deane here, “If we are going to lose, we need to look good doing it.”.

I’m not saying that we need to be flashy or have dominating performances by a single player, but find an identity and stick to a style of play that keeps the King’s competitive. Demarcus Cousins is aiming to return on Friday against the Rockets, and Kosta Koufos is miles ahead of Willie Cauley-Stein, a promising frontcourt is a nice backbone for a team that looks lost at the shooting guard position. YES, LOOKING AT YOU BEN MCLEMORE!

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George Karl has to be reminded that these games count now, and a decisive starting rotation and on court substitution method is necessary to create a style for the Kings to have an opportunity at success.

A record of 1-13 is ugly, 2-12 isn’t any better, and the once promising additions to the Kings roster during the offseason is beginning to look like Sacramento’s worst nightmare in a team that simply cannot play together. Set a rotation, quit with the experimenting lineups, expect Boogie to come back and contribute, and maybe the Kings can take a few victories into an easier stretch that begins on 11/21.

Next: Rajon Rondo: Early Season Edition

If they don’t remember the ruckus created during the offseason when Boogie was allegedly getting traded, Vlade Divac was firing George Karl, etc., etc. Yeah, remember all of that? It’s on its way up Freeway CA-99 and ready to transfer over to Interstate 80 towards ARCO, unless the Kings and their coach can preemptively detour the road trip.