Why do the Kings continue to lose?
1. Bad defense (and the worst part of the Kings' defense is actually on the perimeter- 28th in the league in 3pt% defense, while being 21st in total fg% defense). Defend the perimeter better and we'd be at least in the teens on D.
2. Selfish offense. Dead last in the league in assists. Having three 20pts scorers is not a recipe for winning.
3. Not valuing the ball. 24th in the league in turnovers.
4. Poor allocation of resources. the #2-4 highest earning Kings last year were JT, D-Will, and Landry... It would be HUGE to unload two of these three over the summer. The highest PER of our PF's? Reggie Evans, who makes under $2mil.
5. Poor 3pt shooting. 27th in the league. McLemore is a ways away- completely lost out there. Kings should either trade him or find a starter for a few years.
Assuming the Kings resign Gay to a realistic salary given his production, you have two great scorers in Cousins and his sidekick (Gay). Having a Big 3 is great, as long as they compliment each other. Your Big 3 shouldn't all be 20pt scorers, especially if one of those three is a "score first point guard". Listen, I love IT. And it's hard for me to advocate trading him because guys who play as hard as IT are rare. But the thing he does best is also the thing Cousins and Gay do best, and he is a absolute matador on defense. When you play in a division against Paul, Curry, Dragic, and Bledsoe, you better have a PG that can at least slow them down. Pairing Cousins/Gay with a "pass first" pg who can play defense would revolutionize the team.
1. Trade the #8 and JT for Afflalo (works in trade machine). With the #4 pick, all signs point to Orlando drafting Exum at PG and Moving Oladipo to SG, meaning they'd have to move Afflalo. Give them another pick for their rebuild and start to thin out our glut of PF's. Affalo is a terrific outside shooter with size who plays defense. He shuts his mouth and does what is asked. Total classy vet. Fringe All-star.
2. Trade IT (sign and trade), McLemore, and Derrick Williams for Rondo. If the Celtics don't get Love, they're trading Rondo, and will be looking for young pieces (just like what they did to set up the KG/Allen trades). Rondo is a top three pg in defense and facilitating, which will immediately help two of the Kings' most glaring deficiencies.
This starting lineup is scary. On offense, the only guy you can double off of is Evans- Rondo would eat this for lunch. You've got two good-shooting wings, your stud center, a dirty work garbage guy that every lineup needs, and a masterful floor general. And you you transformed into having a top 5 defensive back court.
Bench- Landry, McCallum, Terry, Outlaw, and sign a vet minimum big like Nazi Mohammed or Joel Anthony. This is clearly a weak bench, but you have a pretty good 6th man in a healthy Landry, a vet in Terry who knows how to play, and a budding pg.
This team would be a playoff team next year, and that starting lineup, with increased minutes in the post-season, would make for a very difficult out....especially if you remember how Rondo elevates his game to an other-worldly level in the playoffs. All-time triple doubles leaders in Playoffs: Magic, Kidd, Bird, Wilt, Big-O, Lebron, Rondo). Plus, can you imagine Cousins in the Playoffs? He's going to be a monster.
The bench is still weak. However, with a still young up-and-coming playoff team, a new arena, and great ownership, you begin to become attractive to vets who want to win and take less money to play for you. That's how you improve the bench down the road. This team has MUCH more balance position-wise and in terms of salary distribution than the current make-up.
Love IT, but we'll all forget him pretty quick when we're battling GS or the Clippers in the first round of the playoffs next year, watching Rondo and Paul/Curry go at each other. Please don't give me some BS about how IT scores 20pts per game. K-Mart used to averege 20 for the Kings, and we lost a lot of games.
Sacramento, stop the love affair with draft picks. You're like the sucker who keeps getting used by his girlfriend. Your relationship is going nowhere, she keeps making you suffer, yet you continue to hold out hope that things will change. It's been 8 years!
Please don't reply that we're giving up too much for Afflalo and Rondo. D-Will and JT are a dime a dozen in the NBA. The #8 pick is not going to return someone on the level of Rondo or Afflalo, McLemore MIGHT become good, in about 4 years. How long do you want to wait, people?!