After a night on which the Kings gave up a league record 23 three-pointers in a 32 point loss you might expect a gloom-and-doom story right about now. You would be wrong.
As a Kings fan last night was painful, even more painful than most of the season so far. Yet, somehow in the midst of this I still see progress. I still feel a sense of hope.
Let’s state the obvious here: the Kings aren’t a very good team. This is not breaking news. Almost every night they are outmatched by teams with more talent and more experience. With a record of 9-30 they are in the lower echelon of teams in the NBA.
I still see the positives. I still have hope. Why? Here are a few reasons.
They may have lost last night, but at least they lost in grandiose fashion. They got destroyed by the Magic, but they also got humiliated. I believe this can be a valuable learning lesson for them and help motive them to never let it happen again.
Kevin Martin has his health back, and every night reminds us why he is truly an elite player who is still getting better. Every time he gets the ball I get excited, knowing that he might dunk on top of two defenders or drain a 25-foot shot at any moment.
Martin and Francisco Garcia look like they play well together. Their games complement each other well. With both of them locked up to long term contracts, the Kings have starters on the wings for years to come.
Spencer Hawes is the real deal. If he was starting now, he would be in the upper half of starting centers in the league. For now, he continues to learn behind Brad Miller. Hawes has a fantastic all-around game. He can play inside and out, and defend players both bigger and quicker than he is. He will be a legitimate starting center for years to come. As an added bonus, he loves being in Sacramento.
Jason Thompson has outperformed expectations thus far in his rookie campaign. He is a stat sheet stuffer. He has a good chance to be the power forward of the future, or at least a solid big man in the rotation.
The Kings are obviously rebuilding. They are well on their way though. They have some pieces in place and an elite GM who figures to continue the building and the positive steps.
The main thing this team needs is experience playing together. In this painful season, they are getting that.