Let's just recap the last two-plus weeks for the Sacramento Kings. On Jan. 23, they notched their fifth straight win with a dominant 108-97 victory over Indiana. Reaching the postseason, while far from certain, didn't seem all that far fetched at the time. Two nights later, they fell at home in overtime to Charlotte. Tough loss but no biggie. Then the Kings hit the road for a three-game swing which produced three straight non-convering losses. They bounced back at home with a win over Milwaukee but lost to the Bulls two days later.
Losers of five of six, the team was then tasked with a four-game East Coast trip before the All-Star Break. They tanked hard at Brooklyn, trailing 103-85 prior to the fourth quarter in what ended up being a 9-point loss. And then lost to Boston by an identical 128-119 score. Things really started to boil over after they got smoked by Cleveland 120-100. This is when news surfaced that players allegedly didn't show up for shootaround and George Karl was on his way out. Karl was somehow given a vote of confidence by the top brass even though there were plenty of rumblings that the players don't want him around.
So how did the Kings respond last night? In typical fashion, they looked like garbage for three quarters but managed to do just enough to squeak by the worst team in the Eastern Conference. Trailing 63-48 at the break and 87-75 heading into the third, Sacramento hung 39 on the 76ers in the fourth to win (but fail to cover) 114-110. Karl justifiably said the All-Star Break couldn't have come at a better time. Unfortunately, two weeks from now, it's very conceivable we'll be blogging about even more turmoil and Karl's departure. Check out Sacramento's schedule out of the break: vs. Denver, at Denver, vs. San Antonio, vs. LA Clippers, vs. Oklahoma City, at Memphis, at Dallas, at San Antonio, at New Orleans, vs. Cleveland. Oh man, it's gonna be exciting.
NBA Gambling News: Sacramento Kings back to being Sacramento Kings
Just when you thought the "dumpster fire" jokes about the Sacramento Kings were getting stale, a 1-8 slide helped spawn rumors of players not showing up for shootaround and George Karl getting fired (they've apparently decided to keep him around
?!?!). The Kings are now five games out of the 8th seed in the Western Conference and travel to Philadelphia on Wednesday for their last game before the break.
"Energy and effort is a huge part of the game, but I'm not going to keep blaming it on that," Cousins said. "We've got a bigger issue, and we need to figure it out as a team.
"I'd rather keep [problems] in house, but we definitely have a bigger issue than just energy and effort. That can't be the excuse every night. ... We're going to work it out as a team, and hopefully we can fix this."