Kings

Sacramento Giddy About Their Kings

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You can’t blame Kings fans for being extremely giddy right now.

Through their 38 years in Sacramento, the Kings haven’t given their fans much to celebrate.

Since moving to Sacramento in 1985, the Kings have been a sub-500 team every year except for the Rick Adelman-coached years (1998-2006). It’s been 16 seasons since the Kings last made the playoffs!  No other team or fan base has endured such frustration.

But there is a rainbow on the horizon!  The Kings have a chance to finish with a winning record and go the playoffs.

This has been a magical season so far.

Credit to General Manager Monte McNair for reshaping the Kings’ roster.  He took a lot of heat for trading Tyrese Haliburton for Domantas Sabonis, but it turned out to be a good move, as were his offseason acquisitions of Kevin Huerter and Malik Monk.

Credit also to Head Coach Mike Brown, who should be the front runner for Coach of the Year after recently being named February’s Coach of the Month.

MAKING A STATEMENT

The Kings don’t often get a chance to grab national headlines because they don’t get much national exposure.

When they got an opportunity early in the year, the Kings took full advantage of a rare National TV appearance.  The high-powered Kings made a statement as they rang up 153 points on Kevin Durant and the Brooklyn Nets.

Kings fans are starting to take notice.  Maybe this team might be good.  But how good?

Statement No. 2 came when the Kings beat Dallas 133-128 on February 11th.  The Kings were in third place and the Mavericks were right on their heels about to overtake them.  It was the Mavs’ first game with both Luka Doncic and their new trade acquisition, Kyrie Irving.

Kings fans about this time are getting excited.  They’ve been in third place since mid-January and they’re starting to feel the playoff vibe.

With the trade deadline coming, they’re thinking “let’s go get some help.”

“Oh no, Monte didn’t do anything.”

Should we be worried?

No.

So far, standing pat at the trade deadline hasn’t hurt.  Teams that are chasing the Kings brought in reinforcements, but they are still chasing the Kings.

SCORING GONE WILD

Statement No. 3 for the Kings came when they played the Clippers in Los Angeles on February 24th.  It was Russell Westbrook‘s first game with the Clippers.  They had also added Mason Plumlee and Eric Gordon at the trade deadline.  As with Dallas earlier, the Clippers were right on the Kings heels about to overtake them.

Kings fans will never forget their second game after the All-Star break. Sactown rallied from behind multiple times to beat the Clippers 176-175 in double overtime.

This was the second-highest-scoring game in NBA history.

It was the “Kentucky Duo”, De’Aaron Fox and Malik Monk, teammates in college at Kentucky, teammates in AAU ball, who sparked the victory.  They displayed their special chemistry in this game.  Fox had 42 plus five steals, Monk 45.

At the beginning of the year, the Kings might have surprised and snuck up on a few teams, but not any more.  Coach Brown told Anthony Slater of The Athletic recently, “Teams are coming after us.”

The Kings are 4-0 since the All-Star break, the last three wins were on the road.  They are eleven games over .500 for the first time since 2005.

REMATCH OF THE GAME OF THE SEASON

If last Friday’s Kings-Clippers game didn’t provide enough excitement, the two play again Friday night.  This time in Sacramento.  Golden 1 Center is going to be a mad house.  Kings fans are loud and boisterous.  They just might raise the roof off!

Can you blame them?  They’ve waited a long time to have something to be this excited about.

Let’s get giddy!

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About Dave Andrade

Sports Director, KRCR-TV Redding 1968-81; Shasta College football & basketball play-by-play; marketing rep; retired, but still doing a daily sports report & commentary for KKXS 96.1 FM, Redding; contributor at Kings Lead

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