The Sacramento Kings are a bad basketball team. We knew this was going to be the case heading into the 2017-18 NBA season, yes, but I’ll be honest here. I didn’t think it was going to be this bad.
And tonight might have been a special case. I’m OK leaving the door open for that possibility. The Kings had to go into Boston on the second night of a back-to-back. The Celtics are a much better team on paper, and they are playing excellent basketball right now, while the Kings are a bad team on paper, and are playing horrible basketball right now. The 113-86 blowout makes some sense, I guess.
Even still, how much longer are the Kings going to look like this? Anyway, I guess we should talk about the game a little bit.
The Kings actually played a decent first quarter. There were a few glaring mental lapses defensively, but George Hill played what was probably his best quarter this season, same goes for Zach Randolph, and they more or less traded buckets with the Celtics for the first 12 minutes.
From the 2nd quarter on, it was a lot of the same poor basketball we’ve seen throughout most of the season. They just weren’t competitive at all.
If you want to look for silver linings, Buddy Hield started to get his offense going in extended garbage time. Hield put up 17 points, 7 rebounds, and 2 assists on 63.6% shooting from the field, and 50% shooting from three. He also had 5 turnovers, but you’ll take that considering what Hield has given the Kings so far this season.
If you’re looking for reasons to be depressed, the Kings gave you plenty of that tonight, too. Willie Cauley-Stein was not good, and the Kings got demolished on the glass 52-26. Of course, you’re going to lose the rebounding battle every night when your offense is this bad, but still, the Kings got hammered in the paint all night.
Hill disappeared after a strong first quarter, and despite considerable garbage time, Skal Labissiere and Justin Jackson both played less than 20 minutes tonight.
The Kings are a tough watch right now. I think we were all pretty excited to watch this team heading into the season thanks to the plethora of young talent on the roster, but nobody is having fun right now. If you think the fans are upset, I can imagine the coaches, players, front office, and ownership, are even more disappointed. This isn’t what anyone wanted.
I understand that these things take time, and all of those other basketball clichés, but at what point is this kind of losing detrimental to everyone? Are these guys learning anything when every game is entering garbage time by the second quarter? I don’t have the answer to these questions, but this is what’s rolling around in my head after another blowout loss.
I don’t have a solution for the Kings’ problems, but I’ll say this. The offense is bad, and I don’t think they necessarily have the talent to fix it, but they certainly aren’t playing to their strengths. This team is always going to struggle to score the ball. It is what is it, this is the roster they put together.
With that being said, there is no excuse for this team to be playing as slow as they are. There are only 4 teams in the entire NBA that play slower than the Kings. How is that possible? Forcing young kids to play offense in the half-court is asking for trouble. Where is the transition? Where is the speed? Where is the athleticism? This team needs to get out and run, and see what happens. That’s my plea. The Kings should be a top-5 team with regards to pace.
Push the ball.