The Sacramento Kings Worst Season: 2009

The Sacramento Kings have been the NBA’s nomads for 73 years. They started life as the Rochester Royals. Incredibly, the BAA/NBA managed to put two teams in that Western New York Syracuse/Rochester market and make it work throughout the 1950s. The Royals moved to Cincinnati in 1957 and put together a nice run with Oscar Robertson, but they never quite got over the hump into the first rank of NBA franchises. They were outclassed first by the Lakers and Hawks and then, realigned east, by the Celtics and 76ers. Finally, after Big O left, Cincinnati sank into the abyss, fan …

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The Sacramento Kings’ Best Season: 2002

Since moving from Kansas City in 1985, the Sacramento Kings have just eight winning seasons, which came all in a row between 1999 and 2006. In a franchise history that stretches all the way back to the Rochester Royals joining the BAA for the 1948-49 season and winning the franchise’s only title in 1951, the squad has 23 winning seasons in 72 tries. The team is so far underwater that they could go 82-0 in the next five regular seasons and still end up far enough under .500 in franchise history that they’d have to keep winning almost to Christmas …

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What’s the Worst Way to Lose an NBA Game?

The Stockton Kings, G-League affiliate of Sacramento’s NBA team, posed an interesting question on Twitter on Tuesday. This is tough. A or B? 👀 pic.twitter.com/PvJcfB0dEA — Stockton Kings (@StocktonKings) November 11, 2020 Would you rather get crossed over on the game winning play and lose, or miss the game winning free throws? In the red corner, you have guys like Bryon Russell and Craig Ehlo, who will forever be known for getting shook by Michael Jordan on two of His Airness’ most famous plays from a whole career of famous plays. In the blue corner, you have Nick Anderson, a …

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Collin Sexton and De’Aaron Fox: Don’t Judge A Rook By His Cover

Collin Sexton and De’Aaron Fox had two of the worst rookie seasons it’s possible to imagine NBA players having, especially if they’re lottery picks and potential franchise cornerstones in Cleveland and Sacramento, respectively. Indeed, Sexton’s rookie year was so awful—under Basketball Reference’s revised version of VORP, Sexton had the seventh-worst rookie season in the 3-point era, and it was second-worst behind only fellow 2018 draftee Kevin Knox—that to instantly call him a bust would be an entirely understandable reaction. Fox’s rookie year in 2017-18 wasn’t much better—he ranks 45th in the 3-point era for worst VORP by a rookie—and yet …

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Mitch Richmond: Was He Any Good?

The early-90s “Run TMC” combination of Tim Hardaway, Mitch Richmond, and Chris Mullin was supposed to be the Next Big Thing in the NBA as the sun set on the era of Larry Bird, Magic Johnson, and Isiah Thomas. Michael Jordan inherited the mantle of Eastern Conference dominance that Boston and Detroit vacated, while the new power in the West was supposed to include the Warriors alongside the Gary Payton/Shawn Kemp Sonics, the John Stockton/Karl Malone Jazz, Hakeem Olajuwon‘s Rockets, and the Charles Barkley Show in Phoenix once the 76ers finally got rid of the disgruntled Round Mound of Rebound. …

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Are the 2019-20 Sacramento Kings Good?

As this goes to press, rumors are flying all around NBA Twitter of Buddy Hield seeking a max extension after his rookie deal expires this year. De’Aaron Fox, meanwhile, will surely be in the same camp if he has another season like his breakout year in 2018-19. So it looks like the Sacramento Kings have big aspirations, but they’re going to have to prove it on the court this year if they’re really going to be able to say—with their wallets as well as their words—that they have the next big superstar backcourt on the West Coast to rival the …

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NBA Best And Worst Contracts Part VI: Pacific Division

As we wrap up our look at NBA contracts, a few things—good and bad—about Wiggins Factor as a stat start to come through in the analysis. In one case, it’s a sins-of-the-father argument… This really should say ‘the Wolves HAD one of the worst front offices in the league’. None of those bad contracts were signed by the current regime. — Jake Paynting (@jakepaynting) August 23, 2019 It’s going to take the new front office awhile to take out the trash. And in another case, it’s an example of Stewart’s Maxim: “It’s not funny anymore when it’s your guy.” @RealFoxD …

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The New Orleans Pelicans Should Hire Dave Joerger

Because the Sacramento Kings are a Roland Emmerich movie of a franchise and because Vlade Divac is as power-hungry as he is incompetent—and why do those things always seem to go together like ketchup and french fries?—Dave Joerger is set to get his walking papers in a face-to-face meeting that was leaked on Twitter way in advance. This leaves Joerger as a free agent a year after taking a Kings team that was languishing in NBA hell and leading them to 39 wins, a legitimate playoff run that ended only when the insane West got away from them (if Sacramento …

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Breakfast Special: Just Let the Playoffs Start Already

Regular-season NBA basketball in April is both the best thing (Denver and Minnesota in what was basically a play-in game on the last day of the season in 2018, tonight’s Pacers-Celtics tilt, and David Robinson and Shaquille O’Neal vying for the scoring title in 1994) and the worst thing (every dull game between two teams already eliminated from the playoffs.) This is especially amplified on nights like Thursday night, where there were three games in the entire league, two of them were meaningless blowouts… …but the third was a closely-contested potential Eastern Conference Finals preview on national television and involved …

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Breakfast Special: Hello Darkness, My Old Friend

The saying goes that “when it rains, it pours”, and one piece of bad news has a nasty habit of spiraling into a cavalcade of horrors, all hope for the future seeming to evaporate in one blow. And if you thought Nate McMillan‘s offense in Indiana was bad before, getting thumped 107-89 in Washington ought to show you just how much any sign of life in that ill-designed Dark Ages system was purely the doing of Victor Oladipo. Without Vic, the Pacers have looked utterly lost trying to score the basketball, and even though the defense isn’t a complete disaster …

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