30Q | Articles

30Q: What constitutes success this season?

How will you judge whether this season is successful or not?

Sacramento Kings fans have a reasonably low bar for success. After 15 years without a playoff appearance, we don't have lofty targets to keep us happy. But there are still differences among us as far as what we would consider success.

Is it a successful season if the Kings make the play-in? Do they need to make the 8th seed or better? Or is it enough to see growth from players like Fox, Haliburton, and Mitchell?

Personally, I see anything short of the making the playoffs as a failure. And to clarify, the play-in is not the playoffs. At the end of the play-in tournament, the Kings need to be the 8th seed or higher or I'll consider this season a failure. The front office is clearly making moves with the goal of being a win-now team, and so that is how I will choose to judge their success or lack thereof.

But what about you? What are you looking for this season? Where are you setting your expectations? Let us know in the comments.

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1951
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September 24, 2021 1:45 pm

Making the playoffs is an obvious marker.

That said, I don’t know if it’s enough for me. What I mean is that I don’t want them just squeaking into the playoffs by winning a play-in game or two or by having the West have down year after the Seventh seed.

It’s time to see some real improvement. I hope to see significant moves made this year to upgrade both the roster and the coaching staff. My nightmare would be to see the Kings compete just enough to satisfy the hard-hitting local media and fanbase, allowing the team to bring back Walton and take no risks in upgraded the top end-talent on the roster.

Last edited 1 year ago by 1951
Kosta
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September 24, 2021 1:49 pm

Oh, i don’t know…….
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Last edited 1 year ago by Kosta
Klam
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September 24, 2021 2:01 pm
Reply to  Kosta

Who needs that P-word when we’ve got plenty of the OTHER P-word!
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Last edited 1 year ago by Klam
EnglishKing
September 24, 2021 2:15 pm
Reply to  Klam

Who needs either of these P-words when we’re gonna get plenty of the other P-word!

PHILM

Hippity_Hop_Barbershop
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September 24, 2021 1:52 pm

When do we face relegation?

Marty
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September 24, 2021 1:53 pm

For me the only expectation I’ve had for the last two years was to attend a few games while buying cheap tickets and moving down, not buying any food, and having a good time. That ship has sailed, the expectations are all gone.

I do not see myself listening to games on the radio as I have in years past, since I lost interest in that last year. We’re about to drop cable, so I won’t be watching games, and I have no interest in seeing the team or unpacking G1C anymore because I’ve climbed over every inch of that place both professionally and personally.

So I think I’m one of those fans that has turned away in a significant manner.

deepshot22
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September 24, 2021 1:56 pm

I’m terribly afraid the organization would see 32 wins as a success.

alec26
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September 25, 2021 12:01 pm
Reply to  deepshot22

32 wins would be a failure. 42 wins and winning season. Hey, they’re moving in the right direction.

Klam
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September 24, 2021 2:00 pm

Success would be getting a new coach… 😉

Last edited 1 year ago by Klam
SMF-PDXConnection
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September 24, 2021 2:02 pm

Success for me is maximum entertainment.

Entertainment, to me, is drama; the Kings are my soap opera. They are not to be taken even remotely seriously in any basketball or professional sports way whatsoever until noted otherwise.

So, give me zaniness, give me complete stupidity, give me all the Shaqtin moments. I want to see Walton try and break another clipboard and realize it’s metal after hurting his leg trying to snap it. I want to see announce a special fan night guest DJed by someone who turns out to be anti-vax and create a social media mess. I want a shaka photo of Vivek courtside with his next 90s celebrity guest Pauly Shore. I want a player’s only meeting after eight games.

Yakshi
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September 24, 2021 2:02 pm

No nine-game losing streaks.

This is the season we break through and go for double digits.

andy_sims
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September 24, 2021 2:09 pm

I’m a bit conflicted, because I do think that playoffs ought to be the goal, and that with some breaks, it is possible, and maybe even reasonable. A lot of players are going to need to level up, which includes the rookie.

On the other hand, I’m concerned that if this improved roster (and possible changes to it as the season plays out) does make the playoffs, there will be a push to extend Walton a few more years. I simply do not believe that he can oversee a truly successful basketball team, and if the Kings make the playoffs, it will be in spite of him, and not because.

Luke Walton is not a winner. He knows a lot of them, but it hasn’t rubbed off on him at all.

Adamsite
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September 24, 2021 2:26 pm
Reply to  andy_sims

True. I could totally see the Kings sneaking into the playoffs and it won’t be because of Luke. Other team’s injures and luck can make a should be 11th seed an 8th seed. If the Kings barely make the playoffs, break the streak, but only start a new playoff drought the next season, does it even count? I want improvement, but more importantly sustained improvement, and I don’t think Walton can do that.

Daydreamer
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September 24, 2021 2:28 pm

I wouldn’t define success in terms of wins. If the Kings put a team on the court that played hard-nosed, tenacious defense and worked as a team on both offense and defense, if both the first and second units did this (and forgot individual agendas) every game (or, realistically, almost every game), I would be happy and love to see them play. Those changes come from coaching and team culture—and players who will buy in. Wins would come.

Last edited 1 year ago by Daydreamer
4on5
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September 24, 2021 2:32 pm

Whether Sacramento is any closer to shedding the Vivek and Matina anchor.

Gregoryl
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September 24, 2021 3:04 pm
Reply to  4on5

Not with Vivek buying up more ownership stake…

Rosevillain
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September 24, 2021 3:27 pm
Reply to  Gregoryl

Yet he can’t afford a new coach.

eddie41
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September 24, 2021 2:36 pm

Playoffs

JackassCentral916
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September 24, 2021 2:44 pm

Season ends and I’m not more embarrassed to be a fan than I was before the season started.

Claystreet
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September 24, 2021 2:50 pm

Playoffs and significant improvement in the win column. I’m willing to give Walton this season and if he fails at either, the Kings have plenty of reason to move on. Which I pray they do.

Gregoryl
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September 24, 2021 3:01 pm

Not Play-In. Legit top 8 seed.

KDsBurnerAccount
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September 24, 2021 3:04 pm

I need to see a major step forward with Fox. Halli and Mitchell are young, and I’ve already written off Bagley (I’ll take ANY type of progress for him). This also has nothing to do with Ben Simmons.

But I need to see if Fox can really carry this team. Is he going to be The Guy? Or is he just a 3rd star on a Championship-level team?

He is my favorite player, and a good guy off the court, but we have to figure out if we build around him, or trade him and build around a Halli-Mitchell backcourt.

Sacto_J
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September 24, 2021 3:12 pm

I think there’s a number of barometers of success for the Kings this season, and they don’t all involve firing Walton, which is kind of an odd thing to say, especially for me. The following would all indicate varying degrees of success to me –

Playoffs is an easy benchmark but not necessarily the be all, end all to me.

Play-ins would also signify (typically) an improvement in the win column.

Consistently cohesive basketball, which you would think leads to more wins but sometimes there are legitimate reasons as to why that doesn’t always translate to the win column.

Barring the above, firing Walton. If that led to any of the above…

Trades of players that seem to be absent from much of the team’s media coverage (read Buddy and Bagley) for players who are obvious upgrades.

Any combination of the above that leads to an obvious improvement in the on-court product. We saw some of that towards the end of last season. I’d like to see it earlier and more consistently. I don’t mind if we miss the post-season if the team is showing some kind of sustainable progress. In the last 3 losing seasons that was a sorely lacking component towards the end of the season, and the fact that we never even try to tank for better draft position made it all even more head-scratching. Most of us just want to see sustainable progress, from the team as a whole. That would be a successful season to me.

Malrock
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September 24, 2021 3:40 pm

Making the Playoffs!

murraytant
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September 24, 2021 3:47 pm

Success = playoffs and not the sneak in kind of playoffs.
But that is a high bar. Success, short of that would entail a hard nosed, engaged team both on offense and defense. A team that gives a serious shit and it shows.
I would like to see Fox improve even more moving closer to elite.
Success also is the duds falling flat and the Kings passing them. I once told a friend I would be happy if the Kings finished 11th in the West as long as the duds finished 12th. I am no longer that drastic.
I want an entertaining product- if they lose to clearly better teams but play hard, get close, that has to be ok.
I know if I set a bar at 6th or above, I am likely to be disappointed.
I had low expectations for the Giants this year and look what happened.

WizsSox
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September 24, 2021 3:53 pm

And to clarify, the play-in is not the playoffs. At the end of the play-in tournament, the Kings need to be the 8th seed or higher or I’ll consider this season a failure.

I think just winning significantly more games (5-6+) signifies noted improvement and success. Whether that makes the playoffs or not.

If they go 44-38 but end up with the 9th seed or bounced in play in, I don’t really see how that should be marked as a failure based on previous recent seasons. But if they go 38-44 and get the 8th seed, that constitutes success? Either of those is conceivable.

I think the only markers that really count at this stage are 1)What is your record at end of year? 2) How do young guys develop? Meaning do they make you optimistic about the future.

Whether they make the playoffs or not could be highly dependent on other teams injuries, COVID factors etc. It’s not like there is a set number of wins that guarantees a playoff spot each year that you can target.

Last edited 1 year ago by WizsSox
Carl
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September 25, 2021 9:06 am
Reply to  WizsSox

Yep, I think we have different views of how many games this team can win, but an increased and sustainable win total is more important than whether or not they make the playoffs.

Bluejohn
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September 26, 2021 12:46 pm
Reply to  Carl

Agree. I would consider 42 wins a success. A winning record would be far more than I expect. To some extent teams have little ability to set the bar for what constitutes enough wins to make the playoffs. For example, the Eastern Conference has sent teams with losing records and in both conferences the number of wins necessary to make the playoffs varies each year.

I know this for sure. It has been a lot more fun to watch the Giants since the end of the NBA season than it has been watching the Kings and I wasn’t even planning to watch the Giants this season

rockbottom
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September 24, 2021 4:16 pm

Top 8 and legit playoffs as well as improved roster by trade deadline ! That is it for actual success and hope going forward !

PatFenis
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September 24, 2021 4:56 pm

Finishing above .500.

BetweenAMitch_AHardPlace
September 24, 2021 5:54 pm

Firing Walton

markdog333
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September 24, 2021 7:42 pm

Finishing with the season with the 7th best record in the west, losing both play-in games and missing the playoffs for a record setting 16th season!

RikSmits
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September 24, 2021 11:00 pm

Footage of Vivek fondling Matina in some equipment room while wearing Warriors gear, causing both of them to step down in disgrace (and living happily ever after anonymously).

MILLIONMOVES
September 25, 2021 7:52 am

I hope they get to the second round of playoffs, and that certainly is within the ream of possibility, but if they make the play-in I will consider the season a success. Progress is the most important product!

Carl
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September 25, 2021 9:03 am

I would consider a successful season a six game improvement in the win column (41-41), which can built on the following season. Another 35 win season with no significant movement should be seen with an extreme amount of scrutiny.

Kingsguru21
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September 25, 2021 9:11 am

A top 6 seed would be a successful season. Fox being an All Star would be successful for him, and the team. Haliburton playing 70-75 games (Holmes too) would be successful for this team making that top 6 seed. Improving the ability to play in the open court would be successful for this team. Not making excuses for 9 game losing streaks would be successful for this team. Bagley taking an incremental improvement leap over his 14 & 7 in 25 minutes would be good if unexpected. Getting value out of the depth pieces like Davis, Harkless, Len, Thompson, Metu would be good. Davion Mitchell being a quality player out of the gate as a rookie would be good.

There are ingredients for a bare minimum of improvement to a 500 record, but the goal should really be the 1st round with a real shot at the 2nd round.

You have to start somewhere. Start there. That would be humungous improvement. Let’s not kid ourselves though: It all hinges on De’Aaron Fox being that player that he’s capable of being and has shown flashes of at times but has not done so consistently. He does that, this is a top 6 team in the West (it’s not as dynamic as I think some would love to believe starting with the Pacific).

Last edited 1 year ago by Kingsguru21
alec26
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September 25, 2021 12:00 pm

I see 45 wins as a successful season. In addition to not making the playoffs for 16 years the Kings have not had a winning season in that time. At least break that string this year. Go into May 2022 either as a deep Western Conference playoff seed or a solid team on the verge of making the playoffs in 2023.

jwalker1395
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September 25, 2021 1:27 pm

Success has been defined by the front office and execs as making the playoffs for the past two seasons. They failed last season, and if they fail again after making a concerted effort to not tank, not gut the roster, and rather retool around the old core, then their strategy will start to come under some serious scrutiny. There’s no lowering the bar now, they picked it.

Last edited 1 year ago by Jacob Walker
BasketballHella
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September 25, 2021 3:04 pm

I have no expectations for the 2020-21 kings plus davion. Besides the same as last year, while davion is impressive to an insane level and I love his drive. There is zero chance the worst defense in NBA was waiting for a rookie to turn it all around like magic. Scoring will be amazing but more games 135-128 all year long.

Also get ready for the parade they will throw for making the 10th spot which to little chap is the playoffs. Just hope he speaks in front a mission accomplished banner.

SunBreakTheDawn
September 25, 2021 3:20 pm

My main hope is that our roster is considerably improved by this time next year. And any record where we win half or more of our games would be a big success to me.

Mike120
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September 25, 2021 11:49 pm

42 wins or the play-in

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