Posted by: Kingsguru21 | February 17, 2011

Some quick thoughts on recent Kings activities

First, I’d like to say thanks for those who still click on this site on a daily basis. (Or on a consistent basis.) I’d like to add more content, but truthfully, I just don’t feel real moved to write about this team is one reason I really haven’t written much. The other is my living circumstances make it hard to do all that I need to do to provide quality content and as such, I have to kind of do this stuff half assed. (For instance, where I live has the internet, but I have to share it with the other people I live with. However, because it’s not ideal, I have to use Internet Explorer–I loathe IE–to even have a flash player to play most video’s. Thus, it’s not an ideal system to work around.) So like I say, this is just where I’m at. So, again, thanks for stopping by. (Those of you that don’t accidentally have morbid curiosity about Derrick Rose.)

* Recently, well, there’s been a lot going on. Yet, I have found it more drama for drama sake. As much as DeMarcus Cousins has been difficult lately (and he has been no question), he’s also a guy with the reputation for being such. This is one reason he dropped to the 5th pick in the first place. In some ways, and I feel it’s best to take the long view here, this may end up being better for Cuz in the sense that the criticism he’s taking now ends up helping to feed the fire down the road. While he has certainly taken his share of hits, I pointed this out last night in Sactown Royalty: Take a rookie who has a shitton of USG, play him a lot of games and minutes, and this is what this list looks like:

Shaquille O’Neal, Alonzo Mourning, Michael Jordan, Arvydas Sabonis, David Robinson, Walter Davis, Tim Duncan, Walter Berry, Terry Cummings and Ralph Sampson are the top of this list if you rank the best seasons by TS%.

I won’t even bother to remind you of the obvious names on this list and focus solely on Walter Davis, Walter Berry, Terry Cummings and Ralph Sampson (he’s well known amongst older people but less so amongst the younger generations).

Davis was a scoring G who, you can consider this ironic I suppose, who seceeded Paul Westphal as the Suns star G in the late 70’s. Walter Berry had a short career and really isn’t worth arguing over in this. Terry Cummings may not be remembered well today, but in the 80’s he was well known. All one needs to know is that Sidney Moncrief and Cummings terrorized the NBA. Had the Celtics and Pistons not been around in the same time period, and had the current saturation of media today had been then, these guys would be better appreciated.

And then you have Ralph Sampson. If you thought the original Twin Tower concept was with David Robinson and Tim Duncan, you would be wrong. That concept was originally applied to Ralph Sampson and Akeem Olajuwon when the two led the Houston Rockets to a Finals appearance in 1986 (among other things). Until Sampson had some devastating knee injuries (which happened in 1987), he was among the 5 or 6 best big’s in the NBA at the time.

Btw, there are a ton of players on that list. Blake Griffin, Carmelo Anthony, Kevin Durant, Russell Westbrook, Tyreke Evans, Vince Carter, Jerry Stackhouse, and Ben Gordon are some of the other high end names on this list. Like I say, even though Cousins may not be the best at doing everything, what he’s doing is reserved for very rare and unusual company. We might want to give him time and reserve judgment as to what his finished product might end up being until we have a closer idea of what his real baseline production looks like. (This could be both good & bad for clarification. It could go up or down I suppose in time.)

* Tyreke Evans Plantaar Fasciitis and repeated ankle injuries are starting to make me wonder if this will be chronic. Because of his physical style of play and also, partly because of his youth, I’m worried about what will happen when he gets older. But I’m a worry-wart and this stuff tends to make me ask “what if” a lot sooner than some other people. But, don’t I at least have some reason in some way to have at least a reasonable amount of concern?

* Whatever happened to Francisco Garcia being out 2 weeks? He’s been out a month, and absolutely no believable word has been uttered about his return.

* I’m wondering about Omri Casspi. In the blowout in Dallas, he only attempted 4 shots. Whatever’s going on with Omri will have to change. While the system certainly hasn’t helped Omri much, it’s also true Omri isn’t doing enough to help himself too.

* Speaking of young players, it’s inevitable that fans will look at the 2011 draft pretty soon as the Kings continue to lose games (very likely).

But, if I had to guess, and this is based on limited knowledge of the guy (reading mostly about him), I would say the Kings are after Perry Jones of Baylor. DX has a nice writeup written by Givony, and there is a nice slice of video if you have time to watch it. There is a lot of potential and a lot of potential to not succeed. Really, in another draft that has more talent in it, as Givony mentions, Jones might be a late lottery pick. At any rate, though, that’s not what the 2011 draft is very likely to offer.

So, I caution to not be very optimistic in getting a stud All-Star player out of this draft. If the Kings take Jones, it might take him some time to find his real stride and being patient with him will be something that Kings fans will just have to do.

Next, what Jones does offer though seems to be a nice compliment to DeMarcus Cousins and Omri Casspi on the front line should GP & Co. decide those are 2 of the starters on the front line going into next season. (Don’t rule it out.) 1 thing Jones does is that he isn’t necessarily a demanding type of shot guy, and given the recent difficulties we’ve seen with Cousins, Evans, and the rest of the Kings in this department, a player who can take shots when he gets them, make them at a high efficiency (Jones has a 59 TS% right now), and a great athlete (which Jones definitely is) could help the Kings a great deal. If nothing else to have a player who can take shots when he has them available around the basket (which conceivably Jones would) and could get to the basket on his own (which in time Perry Jones should be able to do) seem to be compliments that the Kings could very much use. Jones rebounding will be knocked, and rightfully so, but I feel the Kings could use a greater athlete in the mold of Perry Jones than they need a dominant rebounder type at the 4 spot. If Jones could play active defense, hit his open shots near the basket, use his athleticism to block a few shots and all that, I feel the Kings would help themselves a great deal by acquiring Jones. As much as Kings fans desperately want a pass-first 3 pt shooting PG, I think a player like Jones that would be available in the draft (most likely) and given the Kings likelihood to need a player like that, I can’t see how they turn that down. If Kyrie Irving goes back to Duke because of his injury to his hand (which seems very likely at this point unless Irving has one incredible tourney), it could make this an interesting pick for the Kings. At any rate, this is getting ahead of ourselves. I suggest watching Perry Jones though if you can. See if he’s a guy you could live with watching grow.

* I’ve been thinking what kind of trades would be good for the Kings to make at the deadline, and one was inspired by an Akis Yerocostas suggestion (such as the Davis Sports Deli podcast): Carl Landry and Donte Greene for Jared Jeffries, Courtney Lee, and Patrick Patterson.

The reason the Kings do this is to get a complimentary G (who cares what position Lee is) to Evans and a complimentary F like Patterson who is similar to Landry but cheaper and younger. Plus, as noted in this post game thread at StR, Patterson knows Cousins and could have a positive influence in that way. The Kings take back Jared Jeffries contract (and presumably 3 mill in cold hard cash) to help the Rockets get under the luxury tax. The Kings wouldn’t have to worry about Jeffries long term effects as he’s an expiring contract.

* Last but not least, big up’s to James Ham for that rather thoughtful and well timed interview with Paul Westphal. I said it there in the thread, but I’ll repeat it here: James access to the team and establishing relationships in such a short term says a lot about him, and maybe even more about the local media (what’s left of it) at the moment. However, having established those relationships has benefited every Kings fans a great deal even if the majority out there may not realize it. It’s been said before elsewhere by many others, but, again, I’d like to relay my personal appreciation for the consistent and appropriate work James has done this season. Over the years I’ve come across a lot of pointless content, but for the most part, what has come across at both the Purple Panjadrum and Cowbell Kingdom has been top notch reporting. (I say most part because not everything has been reporting. High quality is one way to describe James’ work on the whole.) I don’t throw praise out for him because I want to hype him up (he doesn’t need any meager help I could offer n this department), but mainly because he’s been doing this less than 6 months and one could argue he’s the most respected beat writer covering the Kings. Oh, and this is a guy who isn’t getting paid, and doing it for a blog. He just broke the most important media interview for Paul Westphal in some time, and did it while in Sacramento and with only a phone at his disposal. Is it any wonder why so many people are losing faith in periodicals like the Bee?

A minor programming note to end this with: I plan to write a couple of history pieces and put them on Sactown Royalty in the next few days, so that’s my plan on that front. (I have those 75% finished.) So, enjoy your All-Star break (it’s not just for the players but the fans too!) and do it right (however you want!).

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