A month ago I had written off Ben McLemore’s career with the Sacramento Kings. He was out of the rotation, and was destined to joins the illustrious ranks of other Kings draft busts. But suddenly, improbably, Ben McLemore has breathed new life into his career.
Thanks to a series of injuries to Rudy Gay, Omri Casspi, and Garrett Temple, Ben McLemore was once again the Kings starting shooing guard. Ben deserves a ton of credit, because he's made the most of the opportunity. He's put together the best stretch of basketball I believe he's ever played with the Kings, capped off by 22 points in the Kings’ comeback victory over Atlanta on Friday.
The timing of Ben’s resurrection puts the Kings in a difficult position. With the trade deadline just two weeks away, do the Kings sell high while they still have a chance? Or do they hold onto him for the remainder of the season and see if this lasts?
And if the Kings keep Ben, would they even want to re-sign him? The Kings have Malachi Richardson waiting in the wings, and Bogdan Bogdanovich expected to join the team this summer. Those seem to be the shooting guards of the future, and the team still has Temple.
Personally, I say strike while the iron is hot. Get whatever you can for Ben at the trade deadline. We've seen Ben play well for stretches in the past, albeit never at this level.
But after years of waiting for McLemore to find his confidence and his shot, I'm also hesitant to send him away just as he's starting to deliver on his promise.
The Kings have some difficult decisions to make at the trade deadline. I just never expected the future of Ben McLemore to be one of the most unclear.