NBA season preview: Sacramento Kings

NBA season preview: Sacramento Kings


NBA season preview: Sacramento Kings

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SACRAMENTO, CA - FEBRUARY 26: DeMarcus Cousins #15 of the Sacramento Kings stands on the court during their game against the Los Angeles Clippers at Sleep Train Arena on February 26, 2016 in Sacramento, California. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. (Photo by Ezra Shaw/Getty Images)

STAYING: Omri Casspi, Willie Cauley-Stein, Darren Collison, DeMarcus Cousins, Rudy Gay, Kosta Koufos and Ben McLemore.

ADDED: Arron Afflalo (New York), Matt Barnes (Memphis), Skal Labissiere (Kentucky), Georgios Papagiannis (Panathinaikos), Lamar Patterson (Atlanta), Garrett Temple (Washington), Malachi Richardson (Syracuse) and Anthony Tolliver (Detroit).

GONE: Quincy Acy (Dallas), James Anderson (Darussafaka), Marco Belinelli (Charlotte), Caron Butler, Seth Curry (Dallas), Duje Dukan (Cedevita Zagreb), Eric Moreland and Rajon Rondo (Chicago).

STRENGTHS: A devastating force at center in DeMarcus Cousins … Perhaps the best player at his position these days … He’s going to give you 25 points and 12 rebounds on a regular basis … Interior rotation is quite interesting with Willie Cauley-Stein, who has the makings of an impact defensive player, and a solid veteran like Kosta Koufos … They have scoring, defense and three-point shooting at the wing with Rudy Gay, Matt Barnes, Arron Afflalo and Omri Casspi … Dave Joerger‘s has accomplished a lot with the talent he’s had at his disposal so far in the NBA … Can he pull it off again in Sacramento, where talented rosters have typically underachieved? … The franchise player doesn’t hate him, so there’s some progress compared to 2015-16 … May cooler heads prevail with Joerger and experienced guys like Anthony Tolliver in there?

WEAKNESSES: Questions about cohesiveness and effort … Getting the Kings to run back on defense has been a challenge for many a coach in Sacramento … Do they have enough fight in them? … They are super thin at the point guard position in a conference loaded with dominant PGs … Turnovers have plagued this team for several years now … They added Barnes, who played for Joerger in Memphis, to an already pretty difficult locker room … The feeling with Sacramento is they are always a string of bad results away from massive turmoil … Gay, the team’s second-best player, didn’t sound like a happy camper this offseason … Cousins, by far Sacramento’s top player, should be a more positive leader for this club … It’s just bad, bad, bad culture in the franchise compounded by a meddling owner and an inexperienced general manager.

PREDICTION: 3rd in the Pacific Division, 12th in the Western Conference.




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