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Thursday, March 14, 2013

SDH Presents the NBA's Worst to First for January and and February: 26. Sacramento Kings

Overall Win/Loss Record (as of February 28th) :  20-39 (tied fourth place, Pacific Division)  

This Month:

Team Statistics and League Rank (as of February 28th)

  • Points Scored: 98.1 (12th)
  • Points Allowed: 104.8 (30th)
  • Team FG%: .441 (19th)
  • Opponent’s FG%: .471 (30th)
  • Team FT%: .762 (14th)
  • Team Three Point FG%: .365 (9th)
  • Rebounds per game: 40.4 (27th)
  • Opponents rebounds per game: 44.0 (25th)
  • Turnovers per game: 14.9 (18th)
  • Opponents turnovers per game: 15.0 (12th)

Individual Statistical Leaders (as of February 28th)

Worst Player of the Month: Sacramento Mayor Kevin Johnson

Okay Kevin, it is time to stop now--the Kings have already been sold and is headed for Seattle so stop continuing to fight for the team to stay in Sacramento--the war is over and you have lost.   I along with numerous NBA fans agree with you that it really sucks--the city of Sacramento does not deserve to get the shaft like this after tirelessly supporting the team through good times and bad; but it is time to let go. Instead of just accepting defeat, you simply continue on trying to lobby in vain to Commissioner David Stern and whoever will listen in an effort to thwart plans that are already in motion.  Now you are just simply embarrassing yourself and your city continuing to cry foul to anybody that will listen for a team which has not had a winning season since 2005 and simply cannot compete with the richer and bigger market franchises.   It is time to get up, dust off yourself and move on because continuing down this road does not help anybody--it certainly does not help the city you govern, that's for sure.  
First Player of the Month: Jimmer Freddette

For the third straight time Jimmer has been named Sacramento's First Player of the month simply because he is the only player on that Kings team that is worth even mentioning.  Here is  a guy that barely plays even fifteen minutes per game but still manages to make a solid contribution while he is on the floor providing instant offense in such limited time.  Despite shooting just .414 from the field, Freddette is selective with his shots as he looks maximize the impact of his limited time on the floor.  He is certainly an example to follow compared to his teammates who have proven themselves to be lazy, immature and unprofessional.  It is such a shame that Keith Smart continues to to ignore the positive impact that Freddette brings, instead favoring the selfish and clueless players that continue to drag the team down.        

Well it is official--the Sacramento Kings have been finally sold and the tyrannical reign of Joe and Gavin Maloof has finally ended giving the Kings and their fans a chance at the future that both parties deserve; too bad it will no longer be in Sacramento, however.  Staring next season the Kings will be leaving the confines of the sleepy, and quiet civil servant town of Sacramento and will be headed to a more vibrant city with a bigger sports market and rich basketball history.  Finally, after five years of getting its heart ripped out as their team of nearly 40 years jumped ship on it, NBA basketball will finally return to the city of Seattle once again.  Sadly, it will mean the end of a thirty year rocky marriage between the NBA and California's state capital; however, it will also mean that a once struggling sports franchise will be reinvigorated and fans who had professional basketball unjustly ripped away from their loving arms return to them once again.  The city of Sacramento will survive without their poor excuse of a NBA franchise, but this move will mean so much not only for the city of Seattle, but also the NBA and for basketball in general.

Unlike the two previous team that had relocated--namely the one time Charlotte Hornets that went further south to New Orleans and the former Vancouver Grizzlies who took their act to Memphis--the Seattle Supersonics were not some moribund NBA expansion team looking for a change in scenery.  The Sonics were a once strong franchise with a rich history and a winning tradition which was the envy of not only the NBA, but for professional sports in general.  Then came some cowboy carpetbagging charlatan named Clay Bennett who swept in and took this once proud franchise right from under its fans and transplanted the team to his home town of Oklahoma City.  The team's name was changed along with the team's colors as the team once known as the once proud Seattle Supersonics were cruelly and unjustly erased from annals of NBA history.  In its place stood a soulless side show that was all flash and little substance--just another expansion club with no real roots neither in the community it currently resides or in the NBA.

What is even more tragic about this sordid situation was that the one time Seattle Supersonics at were on their way from bouncing back from a rough patch and were on their way to greater things before being uprooted by Bennett.  Two years prior, the Sonics had selected Kevin Durant with the second overall pick in the 2007 NBA Draft and right before relocating, picked up Russell Westbrook the following year.   Bennett took advantage of the rather low morale and sneakily swiped the team under Seattle fans' noses with two players who would later be the cornerstones of a championship caliber franchise.  Last season, denizens in Seattle must have been seething in anger and writhing in agony as they watched the team that they had once called their own not only play for a new city under a new name and new colors, but go as far as the NBA Finals.  If Bennett would have had a conscience and kept the team in Seattle, it would have been Sonics fans reveling and basking in the glow of victory instead of sadly sitting and moping about what could have and should have been.

Now, ironically, the same man who ripped the hearts of honest and loyal Seattle fans looks to make amends to this jilted fan base by aiding in the relocation of the Sacramento Kings to their fair city giving them a second chance at NBA glory.  As the head of the NBA's relocation committee, Bennett  helped oversee the transfer of power to the Kings' new ownership group from Seattle and has also been instrumental in returning the NBA to the grunge rock capital of the world.  Although there may still remain some resentment from the few Sonics fans that still cling onto the glories of the past, Bennett has certainly won himself some points for redemption from not only Seattle hoops, but the NBA in general as well.  The Sonics were such a staple in the NBA and to have simply yank the team out that had strong roots in the basketball community really sent shock waves throughout the league and its fans.  Unfortunately, one city 's blessing shall be another's curse as the city of Sacramento will be forced to suffer the shame and anguish of losing a partner that they have stuck by through think and thin for the past thirty years; however, it is certainly for the best.

Relocating to a new environment will certainly rejuvenate this once poor excuse of an NBA team that has spent much of its history lurking in the shadows.  A new city along with renewed enthusiasm and energy will certainly awaken this sleeping giant and will certainly infuse a new attitude in the locker room as the players too, who have been languishing so long, will also be swept in this positive rush of energy.  A change in scenery will most certainly lead to a dramatic change in organizational culture and all involved in the soon to be defunct Sacramento Kings will finally have a chance to shatter and free themselves from the shackles of the past.  And unlike the Seattle Supersonics, the Kings will not leave behind a same rich history and tradition that Sonic fans enjoyed, but one that has been filled will very little glory to speak.  Save for that short five or six year period where they ranked as one of the league's elite teams, the rest of the Kings history has not been as rosy to say the least; thus, a change in scenery to a larger and more vibrant market will certainly be what the doctor ordered and will certainly will cure what has ailed the Kings for so very long.