|One of the last home games for the Kings in the city of Sacramento?|
(photo courtesy of Josh Chiaratti)
As explained earlier, an NBA team needs a difference maker to build their team around and contend for championships. The Sacramento Kings had their difference maker in Chris Webber. Yes, the Kings were bold in trading for a player that did not want anything to do with playing in Sacramento, but the gamble eventually paid off. Since Webber has left, the Kings have been trying to fix the club by way of short-term, quick fixes rather than rebuild. The most glaring example of management’s stubbornness in placing a full-fledged, rebuilding plan came in the 2006 NBA DRAFT.
Webber was gone, the team’s window for a title had closed, and it was time to find an heir apparent to point guard, Mike Bibby. I understand that it was weak draft, but at #19, there were some nice, long-term projects you can gamble on. Players available at that spot:
- Rajon Rondo
- Marcus Williams
- Kyle Lowry
- Shannon Brown
- Jordan Farmar
- Sergio Rodriguez
And what do the Kings do? They select Quincy “bleeping!” Douby! QUINCY DOUBY!!! I still remember that night like it was yesterday: the Kings had the opportunity to pick up a young point guard and Geoff Petrie and Co. picks Douby who is nowhere near the point guard prospect that the other players are. I was so enraged by the selection that I started to curse Petrie and Douby’s name at the top of my lungs and proceeded to throw an empty plastic cup at the TV. I still haven’t gotten over it! (For those that don’t know, Douby was scouted as a defensive liability, a combo guard who would best be used as a scoring option rather than a point guard, was given a ZERO in the passing and ball handling variables coming into the 2006 NBA DRAFT—Ed).
But all of these moves since Webber and Bibby have left are nothing compared to what they did in the 2011 NBA DRAFT. At first, I was drinking the Jimmer Kool-Aid as I was singing the praises of Jimmer Fredette. But after awhile, after the Jimmer Kool-Aid started to wear out, even after drinking high doses of the stuff, I’m finally coming to the sad realization that Jimmer might have been a mistake—at least for this team. See, I still believe Jimmer can be a legit, productive pro; just not with the Kings. He will only achieve success in the NBA with a real, professional team. The pick would not be so bad if it wasn’t for the fact that the Maloofs, essentially, forced Petrie to trade for the draft rights of Jimmer and also bring in veterans that did not fit well with this team (see John Salmons).
The Maloofs have been crying poor in the last few years or so and clearly this acquisition was done in anticipation that the cult following Jimmer effectuated in college, would streamline into the NBA by bringing more fans into the arena and help bring in more money. Financially, the move did pay off as Jimmer’s #7 jersey boosted Kings’ jersey sales to new, astronomical figures.
I often wonder how many terrible, front office, transactions can be attributed to the Maloofs. And then I realized that ESPN ranked the Sacramento Kings as the penultimate, worst franchise in the FOUR MAJOR SPORTS in the U.S. and Canada. The Charlotte Bobcats are ranked ahead of the Kings. Are you kidding me? And as stated earlier, the Kings are one of two teams (the other being the Minnesota Timberwolves) who have not made the playoffs since 2005-06. And I haven’t even mentioned their disservice to the city of Sacramento with their aggressive pursuit of a new stadium, threats of relocation, and selling the team with the potential, inevitable move to Seattle.
There’s no team in sports that I’ve ever been nearly as passionate about as the Kings. No team in sports continues to scorn me and has made me throw things in ongoing, raging frustration because of terrible ownership and management decisions. As you can see, I’m a die-hard Kings’ fan as long as they remain in "Swerve City", but at this juncture of the franchise’s history, perhaps radical changes are needed. Even if it means my favorite team moves on. It will at least give me the opportunity to move on myself.
Hello Golden State Warriors, my name is Josh and I am in the market as a free-agent fan and looking to take my talents to a new NBA team...
For some reason, we have a lot of content regarding the Sacramento Kings.