Another terrible trade by the Sacramento Kings, trading away All-Star DeMarcus Cousins; what else is new?!
Rumors were swirling before the start of the 2017 NBA All-Star game in New Orleans yesterday, that the Sacramento Kings were again having discussions with other teams about a possible trade for their All-Star, DeMarcus Cousins. As a lifetime Kings fan and current season ticket holder, I looked at the rumors and easily dismissed them as not a trade the organization would likely agree to. After all, the past weeks have included discussions from both sides about a contract extension which would have forgone his Free Agency this summer, plus affirmation from Cousins that he wanted to retire as a King, and assertion from both owner Vivek Ranadive and GM Vlade Divac that Cousins would absolutely not be traded. So I continued watching the high scoring All-Star Game, seeing Anthony Davis of the host city set a new record for most points scored in an NBA All-Star game. I definitely noticed Cousins only play a few minutes in the game, but didn't think much of it. Then shortly after the game ends, news comes out that the trade had been agreed upon, only pending league approval. I lost my mind, took to social media, eventually leading me to create this blog. We trade DeMarcus Cousins and Omri Casspi, for one-time Kings player (now oft-injured) Tyreke Evans, rookie Buddy Hield, Langston Galloway, a 2017 1st round protected pick, and I think another pick (2017 2nd round?). Then I hear that the Kings will look at waiving Matt Barnes, and possibly Langston Galloway when he gets here?! So we're giving up even more?! For hours, this trade has been hard to swallow, and has pushed my limitations of being a loyal fan and has me reconsidering being a season ticket holder. Before today, I was expecting us to make a trade to get better, to make a push for the last playoff spot this year.
After some more thinking and listening to other opinions from Kings fans, it becomes more clear. This isn't anything new, the Sacramento Kings have been a consistent disappointment. Sure, this deal looks terrible now, but looking back it's just one of many head-scratching decisions by ownership and the front office. Constant coaching changes, a revolving door of players who don't stay more than 1-3 years (or keeping Jason Thompson for longer), intriguing draft decisions and/or giving up too soon on draft selections, plus all the other free agent and trade deals. The Sacramento Kings will always be a losing franchise, plain and simple, past history shows that. They had a short stretch of about 5 good years, but that was out of about 30 years. That's the best we can hope for, a few good years every 20-30 years. With new owners, new GMs, new coaches, new players, and even a new arena; there has always been one constant, losing. Or to sugar coat it for fans, rebuilding. We must "Trust The Process", like it's said with the Philadelphia 76ers over the past few years. Well, they started rebuilding after us, and created a much better team faster than us. With smart trades which lead to draft picks, that they slowly developed, but we're always progressing.
So unfortunately, I cannot see the Sacramento Kings ever becoming a contender, not with the history of deals like this one with DeMarcus Cousins. A good year would be just fighting for the 8th seed in the Playoffs, but there's not many years you could get in without a winning record. They'll continue to make moves like the Oakland A's (MLB) front office, create dysfunction that rivals the New York Knicks, and continue to have losing seasons like the Cleveland Browns (NFL). It's a sad day to be a Kings fan, a rude awakening back to reality, after riding the high of keeping the team and building a shiny new arena.