Leaves are changing. There's a chill in the air. Pumpkins adorn doorsteps. Two weeks from now, those pumpkins will be joined by children in costume and the occassional flaming bag of poo. All of this can mean only one thing, the season is nearly upon us!
As we observe the preseason, we attempt to control our overreactions. It is not an easy task, for we are a passionate lot. Part of our passion is to scour the world wide internet for any and all available team previews. Well, you're in luck. This is my Sacramento Kings season preview.
This season revolves around one thing and one thing alone.
No, not the temper of DeMarcus Cousins. It revolves around how we temper our expectations. I'll pause for a moment to allow you to curse under your breath at me for setting you up like that. It was a cheap move, and I'm not proud of it, but I never edit a sentence after it is completed, so this post will continue without looking back.
I'm excited for this season. I can't wait to watch Tyreke Evans join forces with Cousins. I can't wait for a full season of Carl Landry. I'm intrigued to see how Team Greene vs Team Casspi plays out. Not to mention the thrill of having a defensive force at center in Dalembert. Things are definitely looking up for this team!
But again I say we need to have tempered expectations. This team will be better, but they very likely will not be good. Not yet. There is a lot of youth and a lot of potential. I could always been wrong (it happens often) and this team could storm the playoffs. But as much as the Kings have improved, the NBA landscape remains tough.
My biggest expectation for this season will be the difference in our blowout losses. Of the Kings 57 losses last season, 27 were losses by 10 points or more. I still expect quite a few losses this season, perhaps a few less than last year, but probably not a major difference. I expect this team will have much closer losses. I expect a higher percentage of losses to be by less than 10 points. That is the improvement I want to see, and that I predict we will see.
Now the question is how much harder may this season seem? Close losses are heart breakers. They're a dream makers. They've a love takers. Sorry, I've had Pat Benetar in my head all week. But close losses are hard to take. It's easy to pick those games apart, to see the little details that went wrong, the minor tweaks that could have won the game. Even though close losses are an improvement over blowouts, in a way they'll be tougher to take.
Sorry to be such a downer, but this is what I see for the Kings. There will of course be great moments. We'll marvel at Tyreke's continued progression and we'll heap praise upon DeMarcus. We'll make Pooh Jeter jokes. We'll laugh, we'll cry, we'll cringe. And we'll make it through having had a great time. We've made it through these last few seasons, and we've shared a lot of laughs despite the dredges. Luckily, this will not change at all.
And now that I've put all of these expectations out there, it's time for the team to demonstrate just how big an idiot I am.
Final Prediction: 30-52