The Sacramento Kings haven’t had a player make the NBA All-Star Game since DeMarcus Cousins in 2016-2017. While missing the All-Star Game isn’t a big deal, the NBA is a star league and stars get calls.
The Kings don’t see the favoritism certain bigger market teams receive from the NBA. Sacramento won’t have many nationally televised games, they won’t open the season with an easy schedule, and they will more often than not be on the wrong end of a bad call. The NBA won’t do the Kings any favors.
That said, having a Kings player get nationwide respect and showcased nationally gives the team more positive exposure. That could lead to more fans, positive press, and better calls.
The Kings are on a five-season drought when it comes to the All-Star Game. Will the 2022-2023 season be the season a Kings player is voted to the game? Sacramento has two players, De’Aaron Fox and Domantas Sabonis, who could break the All-Star Game drought.
Two-time All-Star Sabonis is a walking double-double and was viewed by some as one of the biggest snubs last season. While most Sacramento players won’t get a lot of votes from fans around the U.S., Sabonis will probably receive many votes from Indiana fans.
Which Kings player has the biggest chance to break the drought?
Fox hasn’t participated in an All-Star Game yet and he probably won’t until the Kings are fighting for a playoff spot. Not only does he have to compete with all the talented guards in a guard-led league, but he also has competition with fan favorites of big market teams. Last season, Malik Monk received more All-Star votes than Fox.
Sabonis is probably Sacramento’s best chance at an all-star. Karl-Anthony Towns and Rudy Gobert made the All-Star Game last season. Now that they are on the same team, it will be tougher for both of them to make it again next season. That may give Sabonis a chance.
However, Anthony Davis and Kawhi Leonard will get more national exposure, and that’s just two names off the top of my head. I am sure there are others I am missing. Unless the Kings are playing above .500 ball, they probably won’t send a player to the All-Star Game.
Even if the Kings are above .500 around the break, the lack of national presence to go with the 16-year playoff drought hurts their chances since most people outside of Kings fans won’t tune in to watch their games.
I would like the Kings to send a player to the All-Star game. It would show that the team is starting to garner some respect from fans, media, and coaches. That would be nice, but unfortunately, I don’t think it will happen this upcoming season.
While I expect Fox and Sabonis to play at an All-Star level, I think the deck is stacked against them. Sacramento has a reputation that needs fixing, and I think the drought will continue until that is fixed.
The 2022-23 season is the season to change the narrative. Maybe the season after will be the season to end the All-Star Game drought.