3 Reasons this Kings season feels different from the last

Sacramento Kings v Phoenix Suns
Sacramento Kings v Phoenix Suns / Christian Petersen/GettyImages
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1. Injuries and trade rumors mess with the energy

Last season, the Kings were one of the healthiest teams in the league in terms of missed games. Most players battled through injuries, but they didn't sit out. That created great continuity, chemistry, and energy.

By now, De’Aaron Fox already missed significant time, sending the Kings on a losing skid. Trey Lyles missed a large part of the season already, Kevin Huerter had to sit out some games, and Keegan Murray missed some time as well. That means that other players have to step up while the main guys struggle to find their rhythm. 

At the same time, the Kings have been mentioned in pretty much every trade rumor all season long. Particularly Barnes, Huerter, and Mitchell have been moved in several mock trades. 

For someone who doesn’t have to deal with it directly, it is easy to say that it’s simply part of the business. The prospect of moving in the middle of the season, living in a hotel, having to get used to a new role and team, and leaving behind friends and family, is not a nice one. 

Neither is losing your mentor, friend, or teammate you enjoy playing with for the players who don’t get traded. It is part of the job but the ugliest one, and there is no way it doesn’t impact players. 

The energy has shifted compared to last season and this most probably factored into it.