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Kings fans agree: This season sucks

They like the arena though. And Garrett Temple.

Kimani Okearah

Before Rudy Gay’s injury sent shockwaves through the tortured Kings fanbase, I set up a poll to take the temperature in the room on how everyone was doing halfway through this season. 600+ of you took the time to respond and while there were few results that everyone agreed on, it’s clear that we are not happy campers.

On a scale of 1-10, how would you rate the season so far?

Overall Average: 3.9

Nobody’s happy with the way things are going, and that was before Rudy got knocked out for the season. What’s even more surprising is out of the 600+ votes, not one single person voted for 8, 9, or 10. I would have expected at least a single troll to do something like that to try to skew the results but that didn’t happen. Only 12 people voted for 7. 69.2% of the votes ranged from 3-5.

On a scale of 1-10, how would you rate Dave Joerger so far?

Overall Average: 6.1

Not a stellar result, but unlike last year, fans seem to be a bit more keen on Dave Joerger than they were with George Karl (Karl was a constant source of fan complaints last season). Obviously the results haven’t been there yet, and we’ll see if fans turn on Joerger if the team continues to struggle, especially in the crucial second year of his tenure.

On a scale of 1-10, how would you rate the Golden 1 Center?

Overall Average: 8.9

If there’s one bright spot with this franchise now, it’s the new arena. Kings fans have fallen in love with the Golden 1 Center, even with some fair complaints like a lack of leg room and no upstairs cupholders. Right now everything’s still new and shiny, we’ll see if the luster wears off if the team itself doesn’t get it together, because right now, the arena itself is probably one of the biggest draws.

Would you rather the Kings make the playoffs or keep their 2017 draft pick (top-10 protected)?

Keep 2017 Draft Pick: 62.2%

Make Playoffs: 37.8%

I wonder if the difference would be skewed all that different if this poll had taken place after Rudy’s injury. Personally, I think it might have leaned a little more towards keeping the pick, but not by much. There is definitely a significant portion of the fanbase that wants to see this team in the playoffs. However the majority of the fans polled are not only ok with not making the playoffs, but being bad enough to keep the pick.

How much faith do you have in the current Front Office?

Some faith: 60.8%

No faith: 32.7%

A lot of faith: 6.4%

I probably should have made these scaled answers like some of the above questions. Some faith is a little too vague. There are definitely a lot more people who have given up hope on this front office turning things around than those that want to see them move forward though.

How much faith do you have in Vivek Ranadivé's Ownership?

Some faith: 51.6%

No faith: 42.3%

A lot of faith: 6.1%

Unlike management, you don’t see changes in ownership very often. The honeymoon phase of Vivek Ranadivé’s tenure as owner has been over for a while now, and with the Kings not much better than before he took over, fans are growing increasingly sour on this ownership (although it’s not near as bad as it was with the Maloofs). Vivek still has some goodwill for keeping the team here, but with that in the past, the focus is now on the basketball product.

What has been your biggest frustration with the team so far this season?

Slow Starts: 19.5%

Management: 16.8%

Effort: 15.8%

Players: 15.4%

Rotation: 12.9%

Defense: 8.8%

Other: 8.6%

Offense: 1.7%

Coaching: 0.5%

By far the most varied answer in the poll, it’s clear that there are a bunch of different things that are pissing Kings fan off, although Coaching and the Offense are the least offensive.

Who has been your favorite offseason addition so far?

Garrett Temple: 81.1%

Ty Lawson: 9.7%

In what was the most one-sided answer in the entire poll, Garrett Temple was far and away everyone’s favorite acquisition. Ty Lawson was the only other player with above 3% of the votes, likely currying some favor with his recent string of good play after a rough start to the season. Temple however is exactly the kind of player that fans love rooting for: a hard worker who makes an impact on both ends of the court. This result is no surprise.

Do you approve of a potential max contract extension for DeMarcus Cousins?

Yes: 57%

Maybe: 22.9%

No: 20%

I wonder what the result would have been if I had eliminated the “Maybe” response and made people choose a more definite answer. Whatever the case, it seems that a majority of fans agree that keeping DeMarcus Cousins on a max extension (as seems will be the case) is a good move.

Who is your favorite player on the team?

DeMarcus Cousins: 43.4%

Garrett Temple: 28.3%

Omri Casspi: 15.3%

It’s no surprise that a team’s best player is the majority of fan’s favorite player. It’s probably not as high as it would be for some other teams however due to Cousins’ polarizing nature (some love him, some hate him). Temple has quickly won Kings fans over in his short time here, and Omri Casspi still is well liked despite not playing much this year. No other Kings player garnered more than 2.5% of the vote.

Who has been the most disappointing player so far?

Willie Cauley-Stein: 40%

Ben McLemore: 20.8%

Matt Barnes: 13.6%

Young players who aren’t showing promise lead the pack in biggest disappointments. Willie Cauley-Stein was on many Kings fans’ lists as a fan favorite last year, and expectations were high coming into his second season. That promise has yet to be fulfilled however, and worse yet, Willie looks like he’s regressed when he’s on the court. Ben McLemore continues to disappoint in his short playing time as well, looking just as lost and hesitant as he was when he was a rookie.

Which player would you like to see play more?

Malachi Richardson: 41.7%

Omri Casspi: 28.7%

Willie Cauley-Stein: 12.6%

Skal Labissiere: 7.7%

Malachi Richardson looks to be the most NBA ready of Sacramento’s three rookies and with Sacramento’s shooting guard situation still in a funk, the promise of seeing a young player with potential get playing time is more appealing to a lot of fans than seeing 30 minutes of Arron Afflalo post up or Ben McLemore step out of bounds every time he tries to dribble. Omri Casspi’s the only vet on the list that garnered a bunch of votes, and he’ll likely see that increased playing time now (at least, once he gets back from his own injury).

Which player would you like to see play less?

Matt Barnes: 68.3%

Ben McLemore: 9.9%

Rudy Gay: 7%

Welp, 7% of you got your wish, although in a tragic way. Unfortunately for 68.3% of you, that injury also means that we’re likely not seeing less of Matt Barnes, but more of him, especially while Omri Casspi is out as well. Also, it’s a testament to just how poorly Ben McLemore has played that 9.9% of people want to see him playing less when he’s averaging just 15 minutes a game and that number is getting lower and lower the longer the season goes on.

Which players do you see as part of this teams' future? (Check all that apply)

Garrett Temple: 85.3%

Malachi Richardson: 79.8%

DeMarcus Cousins: 79.1%

Skal Labissiere: 71.1%

Willie Cauley-Stein: 50.3%

Ty Lawson: 40.8%

Georgios Papagiannis: 39.4%

Omri Casspi: 38.1%

Anthony Tolliver: 32.9%

Kosta Koufos: 24.9%

Darren Collison: 18.2%

Arron Afflalo: 6.7%

Rudy Gay: 4.3%

Matt Barnes: 3.3%

Ben Mclemore: 2.6%

Only four players really garnered a big majority of the vote in terms of players that fans feel should be part of this team’s future: Temple, Cousins, Richardson and Labissiere. I was surprised to see that Ben McLemore was lower even than Matt Barnes, especially as younger players tend to do better in these polls, but McLemore has had plenty of chances to prove himself and hasn’t. It’s also interesting that the Kings highest draft pick this year, Papagiannis, had the least amount of votes of the three rookies Sacramento drafted. Rudy Gay might have been much higher on the list if not for his basically public trade demand in the offseason.


All in all, an interesting set of results. Did anything surprise you? What would you change about future polls we conduct? Are there any other questions you think we should be asking? Let us know in the comments below!