1. Harrison Barnes
Harrison Barnes is not playing terribly and he is certainly not the only reason for the Kings’ frequent defensive struggles but he is receiving a lot of criticism. It is true that Barnes tends to disappear when the Kings need him to produce, but he is also in a tough position.
There are almost no plays run for him, and he has to make do with only spare touches. In that context, a more defensive-minded forward would be a much better fit for the Kings.
Barnes is just not the player you want to rely on when it comes to guarding the likes of Kawhi Leonard, LeBron James, or Brandon Ingram, and young Keegan Murray alone is not enough.
The Kings need to find a way to fix that, and the most obvious solution would be to find a big trade to bring in a player like OG Anunoby or Dorian Finney-Smith, for example. A deal like that would have to include Barnes, and thus, he might very well not be a King to finish the season.
Due to the contract he signed over the summer, Barnes can’t be traded until December 29, but that is still plenty of time until the trade deadline.