There will be an abundance of teams vying for playoff spots in the Western Conference, including the Sacramento Kings who may have some trouble securing that elusive berth.
The Sacramento Kings saw improvement last season that would lead you to believe that a playoff berth is in their near future. There are young players with potential up and down the roster, both in the starting lineup as well as the second unit and beyond.
Despite their promise and improvement, the Kings may find that the path to the playoffs is even more difficult than before. Another wild summer in NBA free agency has once again solidified the West as the far superior conference, as even more talent made its way westward.
Yes, Kevin Durant left and headed East, but Finals MVP Kawhi Leonard moved out West. So did D’Angelo Russell. The Lakers created a super team and the Pelicans have a roster full of young talent as well. Just a year ago, LeBron James and Kristaps Porzingis switched conferences.
Meanwhile, the Kings have been quietly building a future contender through savvy drafting and under-the-radar free-agent signings. Is what they’ve built strong enough to compete for that ever-elusive final playoff spot?
We assume that the top six teams in the Western Conference will be, in no particular order: Lakers, Clippers, Jazz, Nuggets, Trail Blazers, and Rockets. That leaves two playoff spots up for grabs, with a handful of talented teams ready to compete for them.
So which teams will the Kings be competing with down the stretch for a playoff berth, and can Sacramento play well enough for 82 games to clinch a spot?