NBA / Sep 30, 2009 / 2:46 pm

Sacramento Kings ’09-10 NBA season preview

Tyreke Evans

Tyreke Evans

NBA training camps are underway, meaning it’s time again for Dime’s team-by-team season previews. Last year we debuted the “Highs and Lows” system — predicting the respective ceilings and basements for each team. In other words, what is the realistic best-case and worst-case scenario for the 2009-10 campaign?

Added: Tyreke Evans, Omri Casspi, Jon Brockman, Sergio Rodriguez, Sean May, Desmond Mason

Lost: Rashad McCants, Ike Diogu, Bobby Jackson, Cedric Simmons, Calvin Booth

Ceiling: Entertaining Lottery team
If you’re a Kings fan, this is going to be a rough year. If you’re a patient Kings fan, there’s at least a light at the end of the tunnel, as there are some solid, young pieces of the puzzle to like here. It starts in the backcourt, where Tyreke and Kevin Martin have the ability and potential to be one of the most explosive guard tandems in the League in due time. Evans is a big point guard and K-Mart is a crafty two, both of whom create matchup problems and are tough to handle. Andres Nocioni immediately endeared himself to the Arco Arena crowd with his hustle plays and toughness — and he’s got some game, too, averaging 13.7 points and 6.0 boards in his partial season with the Kings. Francisco Garcia is reminiscent of Stephen Jackson without the insanity/goon factor, and Donte Greene showed some Rashard Lewis-type flashes as a rookie. Young bigs Spencer Hawes (21) and Jason Thompson (23) provide a promising foundation to build upon and showed potential as an effective 4-5 combo. And they still have Kenny Thomas‘ expiring contract, an $8.5 million trade chip that could be turned into some more precocious talent. Sacramento isn’t a threat to make the playoffs by any stretch, but under new coach Paul Westphal they’ll put on the track spikes, get up a lot of shots, and create some entertaining moments.

Basement: Worst. Team. Ever.
While they have guys who can score, the Kings’ defense is going to get ripped up. Westphal has never been much of a defensive coach, and he goes into this situation already behind the 8-ball: Last year the Kings gave up 109 points per game, second-worst in the NBA, as well as a League-worst 48.3% from the field. Their toughest defender, Nocioni, is kind of a dunk magnet who was disillusioned with the whole franchise about a month into his tenure. Evans is a scorer rather than a true playmaking PG, Martin isn’t much of a passer and he can’t stay healthy, and Garcia also looks like an injury waiting to happen; he broke his finger playing for the Dominican Republic over the summer. And like most bad teams, Sacramento doesn’t have depth (except for small forward). Even in a pretty weak Pacific Division, Sacramento is going to lose a LOT of games, many of them in embarrassing fashion.

*** *** ***

9/29 — New Jersey Nets
9/28 — Denver Nuggets

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  • IG

    9 wins and 73 losses?

  • doc

    If your basement is worst team ever.How is Kevin Martin a top 30 go to guy?They’re gonna stink,but Tyreke will be worth watching.

  • chitown hoops

    They should be better than last year at least. Tyreke should be a solid rookie and he will be able to defend pg’s better then Beno did. If Martin can be healthy and the bigs progress a little they will at least show a foundation. People forget that most college teams had older bigs than the Kings did last year. Still, 25 wins would probably be a decent goal.

  • Jake

    As bad as this team is going to be, I’m a big fan of Tyreke Evans already. Watching him in Summer League play was an eye opening experience, he’s a fantastic one on one player. I know that was only against Summer League players but he dominated guys when they tried to defend him with his strength and size. Watching him and Martin in the backcourt will be fun. Yes this team is going to be terrible but for now at least they have a few nice peices and they’ll have money for next summer so at least they have a chance of getting a good free agent. This team doesnt have much to look forward to but hopefully Paul Westphal can at least give them an identity and get them going in the right path.

  • IGP

    Well Martin is a top 30 go to guy because each team needs to have one regardless of the team talent.

  • Michorizo

    Tyreke is going to be one of the best in the game…might be ROY…

  • doc

    And this team has one.Tyreke Evans.

  • David_Brandon

    its looking like another rough year in sac…

    while i like the core, i think a few of the problems here are that we’re TOO young, there’s no true leader and aside from noce, nobody really wants to get dirty. is WOULD be garcia, but whenever he tries, he ends up leaving his man open for game winners and then points fingers or he just gets injured. actually, he gets shattered. his injuries are never light. even his sprains are epic fails. i dont know, i just dont see us getting any better until the team really commits to contending. i’m not sure if the kings are gonna stay for sure, which i’m sure is a distraction of some sorts for the players too. which, in turn, makes the public here nervous. which of course leads to the maloofs not making it any easier on themselves.
    another rough year…at least we got ‘reke and not rubio. :D

  • wiz

    Tyreke evans=R.O.Y
    and to add on my other predictions are……

    M.I.P=chris douglas-roberts or nick young
    MVP=GILBERT ARENAS
    Defensive player-artest
    champs-washington wizards

  • flavur

    Since The worst coach in the NBA mike dunleavy decided to bring Blake Griffin off the bench Tyreke Evans is going to be the ROY for sure.

  • sh!tfaced

    @9 homer. lol

  • Spencers Mom

    The biggest problem with this team is the ownership who stood in GP’s way and forced some stupid decisions that turned a decent perrenial playoff team into the mess it was last year. They’re broke and want to get out so things are not looking up despite the teams potential upside. If the existing talent can stay injury free, no one in the rotation is traded, coaching/mgmt remains unfettered by the MaGoofs they might win 30 tops with Tyreke a solid run at ROY. That’s a lot of ifs though.

  • David_Brandon

    ^^^ i agree w/ you…

  • BRUCE

    Lottery! Lottery! Lottery!

  • http://www.hot1047fm.com Steve Gomez 10a-3p on Hot 104.7 Modesto, Ca

    As much as this pains me to say…that’s a fair assesment form Austin. The Kings are gonna be horrible record wise but should be fun to watch. Their rebuilding kinda reminds me of Portlands recent years. Its a slow climb but I believe in Geoff Petrie and the Maloofs. Yeah the owners got too involved in the few past years but from what I’ve read they’ve learned their lesson and Geoff is in complete control again. Here’s to a lot of heavy drinking this season!!!! GO KINGS!!!!

  • goarmy

    i just wish we lose most of our games but kick the butt of lakers,
    so we can draft JOHN WALL, that dude is a beast at point guard, hes the lebron of point guards.

    john wall-pg
    tyreke evans-sg
    kevin martin-sf
    jason thompson-pf
    spencer hawes-c

    hell raw lineup

  • SB

    The best they can hope for is #1 Pick. Get hold of Wall.

    the they should trade Martin, move Evans to 2Guard. Get themselves a dependable seasoned pro SF than can hit the J and hope Thompson hasn’t hit his ceiling already.

    Providing Wall and Evans can play together, should be a good team to watch next year, if they get number #1 and don’t waste it on someone else.

  • garythenotrashcouger

    30-35 win team. Spencer Hawes will be the M.I.P. Evans will be better than Beno but will still be up and down but at least he is here unlike other lottery pics. and for all you wall lovers we had the best chance for #1 this year and didn’t get it. Evans 50/50 for R.O.y. depends how much griffin plays

  • http://Diiimebitch Chris Ballz

    Sukd in

    kings r killin it ( sorta. Much better than expected)

    tyreke, at the present, seems to be a lock for R.O.Y
    his numbers r rediculous. He should defs be in all star selection view
    and even MVP discussion. He is the reason the kings r winning.

    Thompson is a immature kid in a beasts body. But can put up
    numbers wen he feels. Go kings. Australia rules