Last season seems long ago. The Kings held the distinction of the owning the worst record in the NBA. No coaching staff (Natt’s departure was a foregone conclusion), Ownership panic selling, slashing expenses, the Arena future was devoid of light and the team roster consisted of an oft injured near All-Star,a young 10th and 12th pick future frontcourt and some hard to sell underperforming MLE contracts (Beno, Cisco, Chapu) and Kenny Thomas’ expiring contract to form 7 keepers.
The 2009 Kings had little to play for the last twenty games. Losing, yes even tanking, was a discussion topic. The NBA is a talent based league. You can’t run the race without the horses. So, I will return to the question at this time last season. Do you want to see the Kings win more 7 games (20 x .338) – a wonderful 11 game improvement from last year, or lose enough to remain in the bottom 5 lottery chances?
With 28 wins the Kings will most likely be ahead of NJ Nyets, Twolves, Warriors, Pacers, Knicks, Wizards, and Detroit. Philly has one more win than the Kings as of today. That would place the Kings at the 8 or 9 position for the lottery, anywhere from 1-3 to 10-12. With 24 wins the Kings would be somewhere around 5th or 6th. Perhaps their path is already set.
This appears to be a weak draft overall. Last year was called a weak draft in star power but deep. That has proven mostly true but better than expected. This year has some big stars – Wall and Turner, some maybe stars in Favors and Cousins and then the usual suspects. Even if the Kings were to tank, will they get into that top 4? With the worst record last year it was still a #4 result. So that possibiity is even less likely this year. Oh, and please no comparisons to OKC. They have four top 5 picks in 3 seasons, give any team that luck and they will produce. Geoff Petrie is the draft master but you can’t expect him to make a silk purse of every draft choice every season.
Where do you want this team to end up in wins and draft lottery position (not draft position) and where do you expect them to be?