So in order to make this experiment work, I need you all to remember how little I know about basketball. Remember that? Good. If you’re looking for legitimate analysis of the Sacramento Kings, let me know where you find it. My hope is that within the next few weeks… months… or years… I can be that for you, but right now… might be a tough go.
SO LET’S DIVE IN.
Bill Walton‘s Son, Luke Walton, is the Coach
I know this one because it was on Wikipedia, but also because there are two things every NBA pundit loves talking about: LeBron James and the Golden State Warriors. Luke Walton is in the middle of that Venn Diagram.
Walton was the Interim Head Coach of the Golden State Warriors at the beginning of the 2015-16 season. As Interim Head Coach, while Steve Kerr rehabbed an ailing back, Walton lead the Warriors to a 39-4 record, on their way to an NBA All-Time Best 73-9. That’s absolute insanity.
Immediately after Kerr returned to work, whispers around Walton’s potential as a Head Coach swirled. The only question was, could he repeat the same results with a non-Super team that wasn’t the Golden State Warriors.
The answer is yes and no, it would seem. After the ’15-’16 season ended, Walton was brought on to coach the absolutely abysmal Los Angeles Lakers who were coming off their franchise-worst 17-65 season. The results were slow for Walton and the Lakers who were struggling to find their identity. In his first year, Walton improved LA to 26-56 in ’16-’17 and then even better in ’17-’18, finishing 35-47.
And then in April of 2018, the Lakers signed LeBron James, and if you thought Walton was going to stick around… you were always going to have a bad time. A shakeup in the front office, and another 35–47 finish later, Walton and the Lakers “mutually parted ways.”
Two days later, the Sacramento Kings brought Walton on as Head Coach.
If Walton’s track record continues, teams under his control improve at a 10% clip each year. So if the Kings ended last season at 39-43, a Luke Walton projection should put them at 48-34, which would have put them in the playoffs last year.
DO I think this is a valid stat? No. Am I excited about this? Yes. Do I think it could work out? Absolutely.
The biggest story this offseason in Sacramento has been the Buddy Hield contract talks. Hield, who is an incredible shooter from 3, was looking for a 4-year extension worth $110 million. The Kings and General Manager Vlade Divac wanted that number to be somewhere around $90 million.
While the talks stretched out, Vlade and Buddy always seemed playful with each other. Which honestly, might be why the contract they agreed on is such a win-win.
The Kings and Hield agreed to a 4-year, $86 million dollar deal, that can balloon to $106 million with incentives. The Kings are a young team, and keeping their core together will be paramount to their success in a stacked Western Conference, this contract allows some wiggle down the road.
But more importantly, this contract allows Hield to bet on himself over the next four years. Asking for $110, Hield has the opportunity to get that himself, while also riding to NBA glory, and bringing the Kings back to their mid-2000s form.
De’Aaron Fox is GOOD
Aside from his great numbers, here are three things to look out for.
First off, he’s fast.
Secondly, shoe game is on point, Swipa.
Thirdly, here’s what Jamie had to say about him as a teammate.
“Teamwork makes the dream work, it’s true. The Kings are playing much more cohesively as a team, which allows Fox to be more successful in, well, pretty much everything.
Fox is having a wonderful season, but his teammate Buddy Hield is as well. Hield is averaging 20.7 points per game this season, when last year he averaged just 13.5. His field goal percentage is 47.5%, and his 3-point percentage is 44.8%. He’s a really good shooter. And his shots made are often assisted by, you guessed it: Fox.
The increase in his shooting percentage definitely has something to do with his teammates as well. Last season, it seemed like Fox was scrambling with the ball and taking more difficult shots. This season, however, he’s able to get into position for a high-percentage shot, and score off passes from his teammates more frequently.”Jamie Amos, Basketball Queen
That’s not only the mark of a good Point Guard, but an excellent floor manager. This Kings team is trending young, and they’ll need a Field General to trust and count on. That’s Fox all the way.
The Uniforms Are On Point
HAVE YOU SEEN THESE?!
How can you not be in love?
I think that went alright! Sure, we’re still on the tertiary level of things I’ve read, but I’m so excited for the season to start tonight against the Suns!
- / 10 months ago
To me, Rachel Nichols is the personification of posting a black square on Instagram.