OK, our 2nd segment of the all time roster by the numbers series promises little controversy, as we head into a series of retired and unused numbers. The real discussion will begin when we get into the 20 series numbers and above.
10 - Mike Bibby What, you were expecting Franklin Edwards? Bibby is easily the greatest point guard of the Sacramento era, though Oscar Robertson or Tiny Archibald he ain't. Coming off the Webber screen and nailing the jumper in game #5 of the 2002 finals - greatest ARCO moment ever?
11 - None Retired for Bob Davies.
12 - None Retired for Maurice Stokes.
13 - Doug Christie Easily beats fan favorites Yogi Stewart and Sarunas Marciulionis. I miss the big steals, the top of the key passes to Peja, and the nutty wife.
14 - None Retired for Oscar Robertson. Brook Steppe did wear this number in 1983, which is absolutely frightening.
15 - Vinny Del Negro This serves as a great reminder as to how bad we were years ago, when a guy that averaged 8 pts, 2 reb. and 3 ast. snags the honors at #15. Feel free to make a case for Darrick Martin, Kevin Ollie, Erik Daniels or Sergei Monia. Go ahead. I dare you.
16 - Peja Stojakovic I think he's the only guy to wear #16 in the Sacramento era. Without looking at the stat book, I believe that Peja is the all time leader in games played as a Sacramento King and probably the all time leader in 3's, though Bibby might be closing in on him on either/both counts.
17 - None The Celtics have John Havlicek and we don't even have Rich Kelley or a Mike Bratz to plug in here?
18 - Derek Smith This one borders on criminal, as the Smith trade set this franchise back several years. But no one else has worn #18 during the Sacramento era. Interesting to note (or not) that Smith only wore this number in 1987. I think he wore three different numbers during his three years in Sac (#43 in '88 and #33 in '89), but his surgically "repaired" knees labored under each set of digits.
19 - None Please refer to #17.
20 - Jon Barry Beating out such luminaries as Bobby Hansen, Dennis Hopson and Vitaly Potapenko, Barry led the team in floor burns during his stay here, but the best moment was probably upon his first visit after he left, when Vlade good naturedly prompted the crowd (via the pre-game radio show) to boo JB, and the crowd playfully complied. Unfortunately no one had let Scot Pollard in on the joke. Pollard was inactive at the time and just happened to be on the telecast with Grant and Jerry and completely went off on the lack of class that the Kings fans showed his good friend, eventually slamming his head set down and storming off. Pollard had to apologize the next day, and Vlade promised to let him in on all future gags.
Part III in a day or two, and I promise some good debate points in the next segment.