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A familiar feeling of defeat

The news of De'Aaron Fox's injury returns a familiar feeling that nothing can go right for the Kings.

This has been a season of ups and downs, to say the least. We've experienced incredible highs and some low lows. From one week to the next feelings could swing wildly about the state of the Sacramento Kings. With news of De'Aaron Fox's ankle injury on Wednesday, I felt a familiar sinking feeling.

I remember the beginning of this season, when I had incredibly high hopes for the Kings. We were coming off a summer when De'Aaron Fox and Marvin Bagley had wowed people at Team USA camp. Despite the fact that both ended up not participating, they both had impressed observers. Coming off a surprising 2018-19 campaign, I was optimistic about the Kings futures. But a gut-punch opening night loss to the Sun combined with Marvin Bagley's injury quickly took the wind out of my sails.

I remember the early season when it seemed like all was lost. Dewayne Dedmon was a disaster, Trevor Ariza was pulling his Phoenix routine, De'Aaron Fox had joined Bagley on the injured list, and it seemed like the season was absolutely doomed. I felt worse about the Kings future than I had in years.

I remember when the Kings started putting things together. I remember my hesitation at buying in and believing. But the Kings started winning, and then kept winning. Before I knew it the Kings had won 7 of 10 and were heading into a critical game against the New Orleans Pelicans that would determine the legitimacy of their playoff hopes.

I remember when the season shut down in March. I was relieved that the league had finally done what they needed to, even if it was likely later than it should have happened. But while I knew it was the right thing to do, the Kings fan in me lamented the loss of momentum. The Kings had all the momentum in the world. They weren't all definitive wins, but close wins still count. If the season resumed, I worried how it could hurt the Kings.

I remember when they announced that the season would resume. It did (and still does) seem like a bad idea in the grand scheme of things. But as a basketball junkie (and as someone who had just been part of launching a new Kings website) I was happy that there might be a return to basketball and that the Kings would have a chance to earn a playoff spot.

But now that things have started up I remember why I had so many concerns. Four Kings players have tested positive for coronavirus. Richaun Holmes broke quarantine and is undergoing a period of isolation before he can practice or even leave his room again. And now De'Aaron Fox has injured his ankle.

Reports indicate that Fox's ankle injury isn't that serious, but we also didn't expect Marvin Bagley to miss most of the season with a "mild" left foot sprain. The Kings medical staff hasn't earned my trust yet, and as such I worry about Fox. I also worry how the Kings will look when De'Aaron Fox, Harrison Barnes, Buddy Hield, Alex Len, Jabari Parker and Richaun Holmes will have all missed parts of an already-abbreviated training camp.

There remain reasons for optimism. Fox should hopefully be healed before games begin in earnest. Marvin Bagley being fully healthy provides the Kings another big man option off the bench. Fox's shoulder and Bogdan Bogdanovic's knee should be fully healthy for the first time in a long time.

But the concerns remain. Fox took a solid month of games to fully bounce back from his previous ankle injury. Marvin Bagley may be back but we've yet to see him be integrated into any sort of offensive system other than iso ball. We still don't know how Luke Walton will handle his lineups.

None of this is to say I'm giving up on the Kings. I've been proven wrong so many times over the past two seasons, every time it seems like things are heading for rock bottom I end up pleasantly surprised. The Kings always do the opposite of what I expect.

All I know is that the news of Fox's injury brought a return of dark feelings that are all too familiar with this franchise. Hopefully I can be wrong again.

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Jeromy Simonoff
2 months ago

Without Fox this team has a slim chance of seeing W’s in the regular season, much less a playoff type environment. Hope he’s able to recover quick, as he goes so goes this team…

WashingtonIrving
2 months ago

We do not know how’s everybody game holds up. Maybe we can win some in the race to any resemblance of a game fit.

Kevin Lam
2 months ago

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Last edited 2 months ago by Klam
Ican Hascheezburger
2 months ago
Reply to  Klam

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Last edited 2 months ago by Kosta
Tom Cutter
2 months ago
Reply to  Kosta

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Last edited 2 months ago by ZillersCat
Rob Hessing
2 months ago
Reply to  Kosta

Hey, it’s Losey!

Ican Hascheezburger
2 months ago
Reply to  Klam

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Dwight Krieger
2 months ago
Reply to  Kosta

Nothing more encouraging than a Snoopy cartoon.

J P
2 months ago

Well said Greg. Keeping the faith has consistently been a struggle since 2008. But whew. An inopportune time for an ankle sprain with a less than trusted medical staff has me adjusting whatever expectations I did have. On the bright side Marv can play 1-5 so…..we got that going for us….

Aman Singh
2 months ago

Not sure this organization deserves to have anything go right with the way they approach team building. Too bad the injuries this season will give Vlade further cover for his incompetence.

Kings Guru21
2 months ago

I expect nothing. Therefore I can’t be disappointed. Only pleasantly surprised by rare forward momentum with this team.
 
I have learned to never hope. That is fools gold in the Sacramento Kings universe.
 

Last edited 2 months ago by Kingsguru21
Michael McKay
2 months ago

 
This did feel like a blow, but in all honesty I read that on my phone as I was walking into Target yesterday and then I couldn’t find orange sparkling water to use for Americano cocktails and as I was walking home I was trying to decide if making cocktails was even worth it and maybe I should just be drinking beer but then I felt like maybe settling for drinking bread soda was a sign I was giving up on life and by the time I got home I was wondering if buying the eight pack super-roll of toilet paper was being optimistic and if the burnt out bulb in my bathroom was a sign and proceeded to drink boxed wine, eat wheat thins, and binge Love It or List it and thought if those families can come together and agree on a house despite it not being completely open concept then maybe De’Aaron’s ankle really isnt that bad after all and things were going to turn out ok.

Tom Cutter
2 months ago
Reply to  MichaelMack

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Kings Guru21
2 months ago
Reply to  MichaelMack

I certainly hope this is an original masterpiece.

Kyle Corbett
2 months ago

Like many others have said, this team will go as far as Fox can take them. When he was first injured earlier in the year I think we pulled out some surprising W’s but he is still the engine that drives this team and our success or lack thereof will largely depend on his health and production.
 
But we shouldn’t be worrying because we have our Lord and Savior Marvin Bagley who can play PG if Fox doesn’t recover in time.

Eric W
2 months ago

Unfortunately, that’s a big part of the team’s problem. That with a number of elite assets (most notably Cousins to trade, #5 in a strong draft, #2 with a generational talent on board, and plenty of cap space if he chose to manipulate it instead of filling it with, well, filler) Vlade has built a team so entirely dependent on one player to merely stay in the 8th seed conversation.

Maxwell Huss
2 months ago

Actually it was #3 in a strong draft. Just sayin

Kyle Corbett
2 months ago
Reply to  AirmaxPG

Nik Stauskas made sure to highlight that point lol

Maxwell Huss
2 months ago

Not to mention the 2019 pick which was also a part of that trade when realistic options like Matisse Thybulle and Brandon Clarke were available.

Kyle Corbett
2 months ago

Very very true. No excuses for us to be as reliant on Fox as we are. Such is life though with Vladfather as your GM.

Bryant Strause
2 months ago

This has been the most Kings like restart you could have. Just makes you wonder when things will finally turn around.

Fifth Mookie
2 months ago

I was pessimistic about their chances pre Fox injury, so my overall opinion of their chances hasn’t changed much.

Tom Cutter
2 months ago
Reply to  TheFifthMookie

First I was a fraid, I was petrified… The Replacement Players ..
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Tom Cutter
2 months ago
Reply to  ZillersCat

Get me the ball ..
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Eric W
2 months ago
Reply to  TheFifthMookie

Because of their schedule, I thought had roughly even chances with the Blazers, behind the Grizz and Pelicans. Without Fox I think their chances fall solidly into the “well I guess anything COULD happen” range.
 

Last edited 2 months ago by BestHyperboleEver
Jeff Bayless
2 months ago

This article and comments section are a dark place. The only thing that can save us is JLV.

Rob Hessing
2 months ago

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Rory Cornell
2 months ago

a minor setbback for a major comeback! 💪😤
 

Ican Hascheezburger
2 months ago
Reply to  RORDOG

Hmmm. I have never seen JLV and RORDOG at the same AM/PM at the same time.
 
???
 

Last edited 2 months ago by Kosta
Rory Cornell
2 months ago
Reply to  Kosta

I’m like Kirby. I just inhale other commenters abilities. I’m also world’s biggest Dzanan Musa fan because I swallowed kingsbruins02 whole a few years back.

Kings Guru21
2 months ago
Reply to  RORDOG

That brings a whole new level of meaning to what a Rordog actually is.
 
What kinda condiments do you put on a Kingsbruins02 dog?

Rory Cornell
2 months ago
Reply to  Kingsguru21

I was actually thinking today I’d try the weirdest hot dog (and that’s saying something) yet. I was thinking like a Mediterranean dog: just a regular hot dog topped with pickled red onions and wax peppers plus tomatoes/basil/feta marinated in balsamic vinegar.

Kings Guru21
2 months ago
Reply to  RORDOG

That sounds tasty.

Rory Cornell
2 months ago
Reply to  Kingsguru21

I always make the mistake of planting too much shit in the spring, and I never know what to do with it all. I figured I’d just get weird with it, so it won’t go to waste.

Kings Guru21
2 months ago
Reply to  RORDOG

Fair warning, I’m coming to your house and taking your green thumb from you.

Rory Cornell
2 months ago
Reply to  Kingsguru21

Lol it’s more of a green pinky. I couldn’t figure out why I was getting blossom rot on the squash for weeks before I realized my landlord changed the schedule on the drip irrigation to twice a day. It was actually root rot that lead to the blossom rot. I had all these beautiful little baby delicata squash just die.

David Sheehy
2 months ago
Reply to  Kingsguru21

Lose the wax peppers and I agree with you.

Michael McKay
2 months ago
Reply to  RORDOG

Maybe for a MedDog you can sub some roasted red peppers in for the wax peppers, you still have enough acid from the pickled onions/tomatoes/balsamic vinegars to balance the sweetness, or a richer dog like a mild Italian sausage and adding chopped kalamatas for a punch of salt to cut the extra fat.

Rory Cornell
2 months ago
Reply to  MichaelMack

that’s actually not a bad idea. I don’t have any roasted red peppers, but I have those raw orange baby bells. I could just throw them on the ol bbq. The only rule for rordawgs is that I won’t use quality sausages. The base has to be shitty dogs and buns. The toppings can be creative. It’s like putting gold rims on a Ford Pinto basically.

Michael McKay
2 months ago
Reply to  RORDOG

My Dad made me drive a 1974 Pinto Wagon, with the faux wooden siding, for six months to see if I could with no tickets nor wrecks before buying me my Ford Bronco II Eddie Bauer Edition that took four minutes to accelerate to sixty, so I admire the workhorse nature of a basic dog. I think throwing the orange bells (the best bell pepper) on the bbq is a great idea for a dog. I just added some to a chorizo and white bean stew last night, grilling them first would have been a nice touch.
 

Rory Cornell
2 months ago
Reply to  MichaelMack

lol my dad made me drive his old ford LTD. It was like driving a pontoon boat.
I grilled the peppers but the baby bells aren’t that great for grilling. They’re just too thin. The MEDDOG was still good though. None of the flavors were overpowering. I’d eat it again

Rory Cornell
2 months ago
Reply to  RORDOG

 

Michael McKay
2 months ago
Reply to  RORDOG

Wow. That looks pretty legit. Well done Rordog.

Kings Guru21
2 months ago
Reply to  RORDOG

You should convert a Pinto into an electric drag racer. Double bonus style points if you get it under 9 seconds.

David Sheehy
2 months ago
Reply to  MichaelMack

I’ll second that suggestion.

Tom Cutter
2 months ago

We can get these fast..
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Kings Guru21
2 months ago
Reply to  ZillersCat

Maybe half kitty, half Swipa? That would be amazeballs honestly.

Kings Guru21
2 months ago
Reply to  Kingsguru21

Or maybe a picture of Swipa ripping open his insides to reveal Darth Kitty underneath?

Adam Dieter
2 months ago

This is great! I truly wonderful thing. Fox, Holmes, Buddy, Len and even Parker have graciously taken a back seat so we can all see the second coming. That’s right MARVIN BAGLEY! Now will be the time he will cement is place as the cornerstone of the franchise for the next 15 years! He is going to rise to the occasion. His teammates know this and are giving him the opportunity to shine. They know deep down inside he could not do this with them, so they are letting him do it alone. After all, there may not be an “I” in TEAM, but there are two of them “WINNING!”

Kings Guru21
2 months ago
Reply to  Adamsite

Are you hitting the meth pipe early again Adam? If so, can I request more of this?

Eric W
2 months ago
Reply to  Kingsguru21

The concepts of “early” and “late,” and time in general, cease to have meaning when you’re chicken flippin’.

Rik Smits
2 months ago

Why all the doom and gloom?
 
it’s not as if the world is endi- oh, never mind.

Rob Hessing
2 months ago

Breaking: G1C Player Entrance Updated:comment image

Kevin Lam
2 months ago
Reply to  RobHessing

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Tom Cutter
2 months ago
Reply to  Klam

Nah Dude.. Fox .. not Bagley 😉

Tom Cutter
2 months ago

Fire up the Kings band Wagon. It’s been a while, but it worked great in the early 2000’s.
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Rob Hessing
2 months ago
Reply to  ZillersCat

AKA Bannedwagon, AKA Abandonwagon, AKA BandaidWagon.
 
 

Last edited 2 months ago by RobHessing
Michael McKay
2 months ago
Reply to  RobHessing

“BannedWagon”.
 
Well done.

Tom Cutter
2 months ago

Early try at the bubble in Cocoa Beach…too far from Ron Jon’s? Before Disney and Pixar..
comment image
 

Last edited 2 months ago by ZillersCat
First Last
2 months ago
Reply to  ZillersCat

M I N D B L O W N
 
Ron Jon’s. Man that’s a word I haven’t heard in a long time. Childhood vacation, saw a shuttle launch in person.

Tom Cutter
2 months ago
Reply to  Marty

You enter the state of Florida and there are signs all over pointing to Ron Jon’s. We had to go see it. Very effective marketing.

Mark Murray
2 months ago
Reply to  ZillersCat

It is no Pedro’s South of the Border, but yes, very effective marketing

2 months ago

The Kings are 8 games away from setting the record for longest playoff drought in NBA history by a team in one city. So, that feeling is understandably familiar.

Rob Hessing
2 months ago
Reply to  4on5

If you were born in the 21st century, the odds are pretty good that you have never seen this team in the playoffs. It’s rather sobering no matter how you slice it up:
 
If you’ve been a Sacramento Kings fan since ’85, you’re probably at least in your 40s by now and have seen this team make the playoffs less than 3 times every 10 years (with the league average being a little over 5).
 
If you signed on at the beginning of the Adelman years and the team does not make the playoffs this year, you are probably at least in your 30s and you’re 8 for 22, still well below the league average.
 
I can recall the Adelman years, and how we all had a non-stop chucklefest at the shitnanigans of the Sterling-Baylor Clippers, with a little snark left over for the woeful Warriors. Turns out that in the long run the laugh is firmly on us.
 

Last edited 2 months ago by RobHessing
2 months ago
Reply to  RobHessing

Playoffs in 10 of 34 seasons. Going 5-10 in those playoffs series (series record, not games). So, other than 2002, it’s a 3-9 all time postseason record in Sacramento.
 
The one constant over 34 years is bad ownership. The Kings one sustained run was the only period when competent management was backed by well funded and hands-off owners (somehow they convinced the Maloofs to have a light touch early before they became both hands-on and ran out of money.) In fact, about 30% of the playoffs appearances relied upon the assets obtained during just 2-3 years of competence.
 
Poorly owned in a small market is essentially and insurmountable hill in the NBA over the long haul if you are looking for sustained success. The Kings have had 4 owners. We got 4 lemons.
 
It remains a foundational and systematic problem.
 

Last edited 2 months ago by 4on5
Rob Hessing
2 months ago
Reply to  4on5

Well stated. The difference between how this organization has been run compared to San Antonio or Portland or Oklahoma City is enormous.

Alek Bohigian
2 months ago
Reply to  4on5

That’s a very good summary. I have to admit that I am surprised at how bad Vivek has been just thinking about what it felt like when his group bought the team. Being rid of the Maloofs was such a great thing that it seemed impossible that the new owner could be as incompetent as the old ones.

T D
2 months ago

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Kevin Fung
2 months ago

kangz

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