It's been an inauspicious start to say the least for third-year guard Ben McLemore. Despite a disappointing preseason, McLemore remained the starting shooting guard to start the season. In his first four games, he has averaged just 4.3 points on 28.6% from the field in just 19 minutes a game. After last night's game, head coach George Karl said he would have to look at the tape first before making any judgement on McLemore, but he was far from supportive.
If Karl has looked at the tape, it appears that he didn't see anything he liked, as McLemore is reportedly losing his starting position starting tonight in Phoenix.
It's a disappointing outcome for a player who showed a lot of promise last year, but something has to change and the Kings have other options to go to now. Who the Kings go with instead of McLemore will be interesting to see. Perhaps they choose to matchup with Phoenix's two-Point Guard look and start Darren Collison. Perhaps they infuse the lineup with more shooting and promote Belinelli. Or maybe they decided to take a look at James Anderson, who has played sparingly this season.
This is far from a death knell for McLemore, but it certainly isn't a good sign. Hopefully he can make the most of the opportunities he does get from now on and looks to be more aggressive with his opportunities.
UPDATE 2:14 PM:
More news regarding the change from Jason Jones. This could only be a temporary move based on the matchup.
Not starting Ben McLemore tonight about matching up two PGs against Phoenix's Knight and Bledsoe, not a permanent move yet.— Jason Jones (@mr_jasonjones) November 4, 2015
Remember Karl said before the season he could and would likely rotate starting lineups. That's the word I'm getting.— Jason Jones (@mr_jasonjones) November 4, 2015
That's not to say Ben McLemore's role with the Kings is anywhere near solid, just out of the starting lineup tonight— Jason Jones (@mr_jasonjones) November 4, 2015
UPDATE 4:41 PM:
Here's your starting lineup for tonight:
Tonight's starters: Rondo, Collison, Anderson, Gay, WCS. Karl says its for defense and match ups.— Jason Jones (@mr_jasonjones) November 5, 2015