In just over a month, the Sacramento Kings will begin their quest for the team’s first playoff berth since the 2005-06 season. Until then, all we can do is speculate how the Kings will matchup with the teams they might play over the course of their eight-game schedule.
Or, we could play NBA 2K20.
For Video Game Week here at SB Nation, we thought it would be fun to simulate three different scenarios for the Kings’ playoff push in 2K. There are a few things that should be noted before we start, though:
- The system isn’t perfect because some teams play more than eight games in the span that the Kings play theirs, but we sorted out the Western Conference by subtracting the necessary games from the teams that played more than the Kings.
- Not all of these scenarios are realistic, and you’ll see why sooner rather than later.
- We sincerely apologize to Cory Joseph.
With that in mind, please try to enjoy.
Bringing Boogie back
Starting five: De’Aaron Fox, Buddy Hield, Harrison Barnes, Marvin Bagley III, DeMarcus Cousins
Notes: 1. With the Kings’ final roster spot, they signed DeMarcus Cousins to a one-year deal. Because Cousins is still good in this game, he wouldn’t accept anything less than a $23 million deal, so we turned the salary cap off and gave him the money he wanted.
2. Marvin Bagley III and DeMarcus Cousins scored 21 points a piece in their first game together.
3. The Kings held their opponents under 100 points in five of the eight games they played.
5. Cory Joseph was a DNP-CD in all eight games.
Result: Kings go 6-2, face Memphis Grizzlies in play-in game.
Starting five: De’Aaron Fox, Luka Doncic, Harrison Barnes, Jabari Parker, Harry Giles III
Notes: 1. Hey, look: Jabari Parker again.
2. We swapped Marvin Bagley III for Luka Doncic straight up. MyLeague allows you to rearrange rosters hassle-free even after the trade deadline.
3. Luka Doncic averaged 27.3 points, 8.9 rebounds, 8.2 assists and a steal per game in eight appearances for the Kings. De’Aaron Fox (19 PPG) narrowly beat out Buddy Hield (18.9 PPG) for second place in team scoring.
4. Marvin Bagley tallied 8 points and 5 rebounds in his revenge game against the Kings. Doncic led all scorers with 27 points, in addition to 9 rebounds, 3 assists and 2 steals. The Kings won 108-69.
5. The Kings’ worst loss of the Luka Doncic era was a 109-81 loss to the Orlando Magic. In the three simulations we did, the Magic beat the Kings by at least 20 points every time.
6. Cory Joseph was a DNP-CD in all eight games.
Result: Kings go 5-3. face Memphis in play-in game.
Injury sliders off
Starting five: De’Aaron Fox, Bogdan Bogdanovic, Harrison Barnes, Jabari Parker, Marvin Bagley III
Rules: 1. Injuries have plagued the Kings this season, so we made them go away for the final eight games of the regular season.
2. I don’t get the Jabari Parker thing either, but at least injury sliders are off.
3. Marvin Bagley III was underwhelming, having scored more than 15 points in just one of the eight games they played. Bagley was more effective on the boards, but he struggled with consistency.
4. The Kings beat the Pelicans in both of their matchups with them.
5. Cory Joseph was a DNP-CD in all eight games
Results: Kings go 4-4, finish 10th in the Western Conference behind the Memphis Grizzlies and Portland Trail Blazers.