Articles | Breaking News | Coronavirus | G League

Sacramento Kings continue layoffs, including Stockton Kings GM Anthony McClish

The Kings seem to be operating with little more than a skeleton crew.

On Wednesday morning, Sean Cunningham of ABC10 shared the disappointing news that the Sacramento Kings have continued to layoff full-time basketball operations personnel, including the much-praised Stockton Kings General Manager Anthony McClish.

This news comes alongside the recent revelation that Ty Ellis, the fourth-winningest coach in the G League over the last two seasons, did not have his contract renewed in the offseason, along with the rest of his coaching staff. With both McClish and Ellis gone, the Stockton Kings seem to be operating with little to no actual personnel at the moment: a difficult situation for the players who were with the team last year.

The team issued the following statement on the layoffs:

€œYesterday, a handful of full-time positions across the basketball operations departments of the Sacramento Kings and Stockton Kings were eliminated due to the ongoing impacts of the pandemic and a reorganization of the team's basketball operations structure.€

The McClish departure is the latest in a long list of signs of financial distress for Vivek Ranadive and the rest of the ownership group. Things began to head downhill in May, when the Kings furloughed approximately one-third of the team's staff for four months, a decision that did not initially impact basketball operations. In July, many of those temporary stoppages were converted to actual job losses, while anyone still fortunate enough to be furloughed was extended to at least November 1st. Earlier this month, basketball operations were directly affected for the first time. Sam Amick of The Athletic reported that multiple members of basketball operations were furloughed until November 1st as well, although that date is dependent on the start of the 2020-2021 season, which will likely be delayed until at least January of next year.

Ownership has been put in a difficult position due to the nature of Sacramento's small market, their investments in real estate and hospitality around the Golden 1 Center, the team's failure to ever capitalize on a playoff run, and the tens of millions of dollars in extra income paid to the myriad of fired staff members over the last seven years, including the recently departed Vlade Divac. It's clear that the Kings have furloughed and laid off more staff members than most, if not all of the other teams in the NBA.

With the already having made major cuts and operating on nothing short of a shoestring budget, and with Monte McNair still needing to spend significant cash to fill out his barren front office, one of the few places left for the Kings to reduce costs is on the actual roster. Nemanja Bjelica, a productive veteran on a fair deal, has a non-guaranteed $7.2 million contract next year, while Bogdan Bogdanovic will probably cost twice that amount to retain this offseason. The Kings also own three second round picks in the upcoming draft, assets which have been sold for straight cash in the past.

Hopefully these recent cuts are the last we see due to COVID-19, and the actual roster and draft picks are unaffected, as Kings fans are far too familiar with the concept of financially challenged owners trying to operate as as cheaply as possible, rather than trying to win games and make the playoffs.

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RobHessing
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September 30, 2020 2:27 pm

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Klam
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September 30, 2020 2:31 pm
Reply to  RobHessing

comment image?itemid=11553933

HeuristicLineup
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October 1, 2020 11:43 am
Reply to  RobHessing

Could have saved a few bucks by not signing a terrible coach to such a long contract I bet

Kosta
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October 2, 2020 10:42 am

The franchise is so far off the mark we can’t even see the motels and hotels on HeuristicLineup’s chart.

Adamsite
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Nostradumbass 14
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September 30, 2020 2:28 pm

Does anyone not think this will affect basketball decisions this offseason. Would it shock anyone if they let Bogi walk and the cut Nemanja not because they want to, but because they have to.

Wonderchild
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September 30, 2020 2:37 pm
Reply to  Adamsite

At this point I’d be surprised if it doesn’t.

Kosta
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September 30, 2020 2:39 pm
Reply to  Adamsite

I think it means we are drafting Thomas Robinson for Jason Thompson insurance.

RORDOG
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September 30, 2020 2:52 pm
Reply to  Adamsite

This is why I thought the whole thing about letting the new GM pick his own coach was completely missing the point. If you’re eliminating positions that probably don’t even pay 6 figures, then you definitely can’t afford to pay two head coaches at the same.

Hopefully, guys like McClish and Drake U’u get a chance to at least interview for any new job openings that incorporate their former duties in Stockton.

Adamsite
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September 30, 2020 3:00 pm
Reply to  RORDOG

I know we talked about this a bit in the other thread, but I really wonder about the future of the Stockton Kings from a financial viability standpoint. I also imagine the Kings aren’t alone in the financial solvency of their respective G-League teams.

I damn near 100% in believing that the NBA will soon just “furlough” the entire G-Leauge until further notice. If the NBA can’t play games outside a bubble, then there is no way for the G-League season to happen.

RORDOG
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September 30, 2020 3:48 pm
Reply to  Adamsite

I don’t think McNair would’ve taken the job if the Kings planned on getting rid of their G League team completely (unless the entire G League gets dissolved).

AirmaxPG
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September 30, 2020 4:25 pm
Reply to  RORDOG

Live look-in at McNair:

burgundy.jpg
Jman1949
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September 30, 2020 5:12 pm
Reply to  AirmaxPG

Layoffs? You kidding me? Don’t talk about layoffs!…

Biscuit
September 30, 2020 5:49 pm
Reply to  Jman1949

Needs the gif

RobHessing
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September 30, 2020 6:15 pm
Reply to  Biscuit

Mora less.

RORDOG
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October 1, 2020 12:36 am
Reply to  AirmaxPG

To be clear, I think this is funny. I also think it’s highly unlikely McNair wasn’t fully aware of what he was signing up for when he took the job. I think we need to come to grips with the reality that this team is going to make a lot of business decisions over the next few years that negatively impact basketball operations.

The simple fact of the matter is that this team cannot operate in a manner that places on-court production over operational costs. The next few years will make the twilight years of the Maloof era look like the era of frivolous spending. According to Youngman, the Kings just got rid of the got damn equipment manager. If they need to get rid of the equipment manager, then just imagine the decisions they’re about to make related to the on-court product.

We are entering the void, and it doesn’t seem like folks are fully prepared for what that means. The hope is that this age of austerity will provide opportunities to obtain the type of assets needed to truly rebuild.

Point being, if you want to root for a team that makes decisions based solely on what’s in the best interest of the team, then maybe scroll through the list of richest NBA owners, and pick a team near the top. The Sacramento Kings will be shooting themselves in the foot for the foreseeable future because it’s cheaper to treat than shooting a more important part of the body.

Adamsite
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Nostradumbass 14
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October 1, 2020 7:06 am
Reply to  RORDOG

Now I wonder if they even fill the lead coaches assistant job.

AirmaxPG
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October 1, 2020 8:42 am
Reply to  RORDOG

Looks like Otis already touched on this below, but Vivek has the worst instincts of any owner I’ve ever seen. He zigs when he should zag and over the last 7 years has made one disastrous decision after another.

Other teams will be able to weather this storm because they run a tight ship and don’t burn money when times are good financially.

I’m sure McNair knew this going in, but I wonder to what extent. There’s always a honeymoon period with a new employer. You don’t see the warts; you think you can fix this. I sure hope he can.

richie88
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October 1, 2020 12:23 am
Reply to  Adamsite

Phoenix already sold its G League team to Detroit.

Adamsite
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Nostradumbass 14
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October 1, 2020 7:10 am
Reply to  richie88

Oh wow! I didn’t realize that. I just read up on it and it sounds like the Pistons just nixed their relationship with the Grand Rapids Drive and purchased the Northern Arizona Suns.

I also read that there are still 3 teams with no G-League affiliations, which makes me really wonder about the future of the Stockton Kings.

richie88
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October 2, 2020 2:18 am
Reply to  Adamsite

I believe the teams w/o G League affiliates are Denver, Portland & Phoenix (though I think Phoenix’s lack of an affiliate is supposed to begin in the 2021-22 season).

Kosta
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October 2, 2020 10:44 am
Reply to  richie88

Phoenix already sold its G League team…

Not to worry, Phoenix fans. Another team will rise from the ashes.

LesJepsen3pointer
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October 1, 2020 7:46 am
Reply to  Adamsite

Stockton can’t have nice things. This seems like a reasonable bet.

Otis
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September 30, 2020 4:33 pm
Reply to  RORDOG

I don’t think anyone was missing the point. If they are too cash poor to run the team properly, they could say so. Or look into selling the team. Or just write a check, I think that’s what Vivek said he’d do way back in the day.

I mean, they extended front office contracts for bad employees and fired good coaches, which has them stuck paying salaries after departure – well, that was a business decision they actively made.

Firing Luke Walton and allowing the new GM to get his new coach is the proper basketball decision. All the caveats are on Vivek.

Last edited 1 year ago by Otis
RORDOG
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September 30, 2020 5:01 pm
Reply to  Otis

I think a lot of people were missing the point, so I guess we’ll have to agree to disagree on that.

Otis
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September 30, 2020 5:15 pm
Reply to  RORDOG

You think people didn’t understand that they might be in a fiscal crunch? Maybe a few, but doubt it was many.

RORDOG
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September 30, 2020 5:40 pm
Reply to  Otis

this Isn’t a fiscal crunch. According to James Ham their revenue has gone down by over $100 million in less than 6 months. They’ve already had at least one call in which all the owners had to write checks or give up their ownership share according to CD.

so should they replace Walton? Probably. Is this an example of Vivek making the same mistake a third time? I don’t think so. I think it’s just a financial reality, and shouldn’t be judged in the same light as when he hired Pete/Vlade.

Otis
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September 30, 2020 5:44 pm
Reply to  RORDOG

I’m not saying they should have predicted COVID, but they’ve run their shop in a shitty, fiscally irresponsible manner the last five years or so.

Because they’ve done so, McNair is being forced to start his GM career with one hand tied behind his back.

RORDOG
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September 30, 2020 6:27 pm
Reply to  Otis

I totally agree with that. But that’s a different conversation than when people say Vivek hasn’t learned his lesson about hiring a coach before the GM. For all intents and purposes their hands are tied unless the owners voluntarily choose to sell their shares to some whale that can afford to provide a cash infusion.

RikSmits
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October 1, 2020 5:34 am
Reply to  RORDOG

So let me get this straight; because Vivek didnb’t handle his financial shit properly we have to excuse his basketball ops shit?

If he doesn’t have the financial clout to properly operate an NBA franchise he should sell his shares and step aside.

Adamsite
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Nostradumbass 14
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October 1, 2020 7:12 am
Reply to  RikSmits

I think he has the financial clout, but the question is does he want to sink his own money into the team to keep it viable. NBA franchises are like toys to their owners and it may not be worth it for them for additional personal investment.

AirmaxPG
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October 1, 2020 8:57 am
Reply to  Adamsite

I wonder what Joe D is making. Probably got a decent raise by getting promoted to… whatever the heck it is he does now.

RORDOG
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October 1, 2020 9:28 am
Reply to  RikSmits

This is not, in fact, getting things straight. If you want to imagine these scenarios in which Vivek falls on his sword for the good of the team, then have at it. I just like to make sure the situation is described accurately. Luke keeping his job is the result of a series of past mistakes made by an owner who now can’t afford to completely remedy the situation, and is unwilling to step aside to let someone else clean up his mess. That is different than the situation with past GMs. Vivek is not choosing his preferred head coach like he did with Malone/Joerger/Karl. And it’s different in a worse way.

I just don’t think people have fully comprehended the situation this team is in if they’re framing the Walton/McNair as the latest example of Vivek meddling. This is actually an example of what owners are willing to do to protect their own wealth. Good people will lose their job through no fault of their own, and bad coaches get to keep their jobs because the owner can’t afford to replace them. That’s not an excuse, that’s reality, and it sucks.

Otis
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October 1, 2020 4:13 pm
Reply to  RORDOG

You keep saying this, and it’s a bit insulting:

I just don’t think people have fully comprehended the situation

RORDOG
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October 1, 2020 4:49 pm
Reply to  Otis

Insulting to who? The redditor that makes posts about how the Kings should go after the Doc Rivers? The people that tweet at CD so often that the Kings should go after Mike D’Antoni that he had to pin a tweet saying it wasn’t going to happen? I never once said you don’t comprehend, quite the opposite actually, and I don’t know why you’re offended on behalf of the “people” I’m referring to.

Otis
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October 2, 2020 5:29 am
Reply to  RORDOG

Then you should address those people directly. I assume most people here understand the deal.

RORDOG
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October 2, 2020 9:06 am
Reply to  Otis

how about you let me decide how I should address people/issues?

Kosta
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October 2, 2020 10:46 am
Reply to  RORDOG

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RORDOG
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October 2, 2020 11:46 am
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Kosta
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October 2, 2020 10:45 am
Reply to  RikSmits

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Inthestarz
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September 30, 2020 6:35 pm
Reply to  Otis

Is there a scenario the Kings should be trying to win games next year?

AirmaxPG
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October 1, 2020 9:06 am
Reply to  Inthestarz

If they somehow went all in and gave up Buddy, Cojo and our 2021 1st for Oladipo and Myles Turner*. Then I would say we should win some games. …Otherwise, no.

*For the record I am strongly opposed to this trade.

BeTheBall
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September 30, 2020 3:02 pm
Reply to  Adamsite

I think Bogi is gone. Though I think instead of cutting, they’ll trade Nemanja for a pick/stash.

Adamsite
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September 30, 2020 3:10 pm
Reply to  BeTheBall

The only reason another team would want Nemanja is for his unguaranteed deal that they can then cut. This means they would want to send back salary to the Kings, which is precisely the last thing the Kings would want.

At any other time I would agree with you, a deal like Nemanja’s gets you a positive return, but with Covid his unguaranteed deal is best used by the Kings as a way to cut salary. This sucks.

RORDOG
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September 30, 2020 3:25 pm
Reply to  Adamsite

I don’t think it works that way. I believe only the guaranteed portion of a player’s salary counts towards the salary matching in a trade.

Adamsite
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September 30, 2020 4:46 pm
Reply to  RORDOG

Does it? I thought it was the full thing, especially if the team that gets him keeps him.

RORDOG
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September 30, 2020 7:25 pm
Reply to  Adamsite

It’s all weird because of covid since they changed all the guarantee dates, and also when the 2020-2021 season officially starts (the beginning of the free agency period). Basically, they need to trade him during this season, and before the guarantee date. If the guarantee date is after the official beginning of the next season, then they can’t use his guaranteed salary for matching purposes if they trade him during the 2020-2021 free agency period.

Also, I don’t even know if there’s a currently a moratorium on trades. Typically, teams are allowed to make trades as long as both teams have been eliminated from the playoffs.

Greg
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September 30, 2020 3:50 pm
Reply to  Adamsite

I disagree. He’s a $7 million expiring contract who is a strecth 4 and shot over 40% from 3 for the past 3 years on high volume.

Some owners have much deeper pockets than the Kings and will have no qualms about adding salary as they chase a ring. I think there will be a market for Bjelica the player, not just Bjelica the contract.

Adamsite
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September 30, 2020 4:41 pm
Reply to  Greg

I would agree with you in any other season, but I think every team is going to be looking at cutting salary, especially with so many unknowns about next season. Deeper pockets are one thing, but bleeding money is bleeding money.

Wonderchild
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September 30, 2020 4:42 pm
Reply to  Adamsite

Any chance at all they try to push Fox’s extension and make him RFA?

Adamsite
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September 30, 2020 4:44 pm
Reply to  Wonderchild

I have no idea what’s going to happen going forward. I think the draft will tell us a lot. If they start selling off picks I think the writing is on the wall.

Last edited 1 year ago by Adamsite
L-Train3.1
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October 1, 2020 3:03 am
Reply to  richie88

Due to the paywall, I will have to take your word for it.

Inthestarz
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September 30, 2020 3:30 pm
Reply to  Adamsite

It will bias the team into rebuilding with youth and getting rid of any vets (including the inconsistent BOgi who should be gone anyway)

which is fine, as that’s what needs to happen anyway

if it continues past this offseason ownership needs to be pressured to sell (it already should be)

AirmaxPG
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September 30, 2020 3:53 pm
Reply to  Inthestarz

I hope you are right. Start the fire sale; stockpile picks and prospects. No fans in the arena most likely this year anyway. Two amazing drafts coming up. And we’re going to extend Fox for $30M?

Kosta
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September 30, 2020 2:38 pm

The Kings seem to be operating with little more than a skeleton crew.

“KINGS FANS, WELCOME BACK, K-MART, CISCO, and Q-DOUBY….your new assistant GM’s!”
comment image

Last edited 1 year ago by Kosta
RobHessing
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September 30, 2020 3:27 pm
Reply to  Kosta

Sneaky good. Old school.

Bill2455
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September 30, 2020 3:04 pm

I expect the Kings will look to sell their number one draft pick this year.

RORDOG
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September 30, 2020 3:39 pm
Reply to  Bill2455

I can say with 100% certainty that the Kings will not sell the pick outright.

Kosta
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September 30, 2020 4:00 pm
Reply to  RORDOG

^ We’ve found Matina’s burner account!

(i knew it, i knew it, i knew it. You tried to throw us off the trail with those clever hotdog tales but it didn’t work!)

..
.
.
(and this explains how you were able to share a house with 5 sorority sisters)

Last edited 1 year ago by Kosta
RORDOG
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September 30, 2020 4:20 pm
Reply to  Kosta

I can’t be Matina. I don’t have any ability to understand legal contracts. When I try to, I just say to myself €œit’s all Greek to me!€

AirmaxPG
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September 30, 2020 4:22 pm
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Matina has a Greek last name… So you ARE Matina!!

RORDOG
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September 30, 2020 9:27 pm
Reply to  AirmaxPG

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Wonderchild
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September 30, 2020 4:57 pm
Reply to  RORDOG

This makes me think of Roger Dorn during his short stint as team owner in Major League 2.

I didn’t sell him outright. I got you an outfielder. He used to play for the Giants. Not those Giants.

RORDOG
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September 30, 2020 9:47 pm
Reply to  Wonderchild

One of the hardest things I ever had to do was get rid of my box of VHS tapes. I had both Major Leagues in there. I loved those movies. It’s the type of comedy that simply isn’t made anymore.

Bill2455
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September 30, 2020 5:46 pm
Reply to  RORDOG

And then you may be wrong.

RORDOG
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September 30, 2020 8:33 pm
Reply to  Bill2455

how about this: I will get a Bill2455 tattoo on my bicep with some horrendous looking barbed wire if the kings trade their #12 pick and receive only cash considerations. If they end up receiving any sort of non-cash asset (which obviously includes simply drafting and keeping a player), then you have to become a patron of this site.

Sound like a deal?

RORDOG
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September 30, 2020 9:29 pm
Reply to  RORDOG

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Bill2455
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October 1, 2020 6:28 am
Reply to  RORDOG

Your offer kind of sounds like a Kings deal. Spinning wheels with no real winners.

My suggestion provides them 3 million plus to hire badly needed staff for the new GM.

TheFifthMookie
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October 1, 2020 3:39 pm
Reply to  Bill2455

As a patron of this site, I vigorously disagree with you, the readers of this site are the winners should RORDOG win, with the dawg being a real loser if he has to get that awful tattoo.

TheFifthMookie
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October 1, 2020 3:39 pm
Reply to  TheFifthMookie

Speaking of – my glorious badges are gone again!!

RORDOG
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October 1, 2020 4:11 pm
Reply to  TheFifthMookie

lol. I was just baiting Bill2455. Its actually illegal to sell a first round pick outright under the CBA, so I knew with 100% certainty that I’d win the bet when I made it. Here’s Larry Coon’s explanation from the CBAFAQ:

Cash cannot be the only asset sent out in trade for a first round draft pick. In other words, teams can’t “sell” their first round draft picks, but they can sell second round picks, player contracts or draft rights.

Kingsguru21
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September 30, 2020 9:05 pm

Ugh. I’m so over the novel coronavirus COVID-19. So very over it.

L-Train3.1
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October 1, 2020 3:05 am
Reply to  Kingsguru21

I wish it were over us, alas.

richie88
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October 1, 2020 12:35 am

If enough owners are hurting financially, expansion would make sense.

L-Train3.1
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October 1, 2020 3:07 am
Reply to  richie88

Move the contracts around, less impact on each owner? They’d still have to fill a roster, I don’t think expansion is the solution.

What happened to the TV revenue from the bubble? Wasn’t that supposed to be a windfall?

Wonderchild
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October 1, 2020 8:35 am
Reply to  L-Train3.1

Expansion means the incoming owner(s) pays each existing owner a big fat check.

Adamsite
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Nostradumbass 14
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October 1, 2020 8:42 am
Reply to  Wonderchild

I think we’d have to wait for Minny to sell before the league thinks of expansion. The sale price of the Timberwolves may indicate what teams are now truly worth.

Wonderchild
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October 1, 2020 9:06 am
Reply to  Adamsite

good point.

Adamsite
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October 1, 2020 8:41 am
Reply to  L-Train3.1

From what I understand the TV revenue from the bubble was just the teams completing their tv contracts. They were counting on the money BEFORE Covid. It was by no means a windfall, it only lessened the damage. I honestly don’t know if any team truly profited this season.

Hobby916
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October 1, 2020 5:57 am

Maybe instead of spending near the salary cap for a non-playoff team, they get closer to the Salary floor and use that unspent money on paying/hiring the appropriate number of basketball ops staff to try and right this ship. They don’t need guys like Jabari Parker, Corey Joseph, or Kent Bazemore on the roster. Those positions can easily be filled with near minimum contract guys and will allow the scouting and analytics department to have the capability of scouting future players.

This organization just does things so backwards at times.

Last edited 1 year ago by Josh Hobson
Adamsite
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October 1, 2020 8:44 am
Reply to  Hobby916

I agree with this. round out the. roster with some 2nd round picks and 2-way players, maybe even hand out a bunch of 10 day deals over the season. Then lose more games then you would like but get a top 5 pick in the loaded 2021 draft.

Wonderchild
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October 1, 2020 8:53 am
Reply to  Adamsite

I think that’s going to be the biggest change over the next couple seasons. Converting the % of money from vet role players to our best players. Some of that will come naturally as Fox gets his second contract (hopefully!!).

LesJepsen3pointer
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October 1, 2020 7:43 am

Kings replaced Vlade in a tough environment. That goes a long way. McClish and Ellis were excellent. They’ll have great careers and make the Kings look dumb and that ok. FO retains the right to restructure. That’s the NBA. Meh. I’ve seen worse from this team.

LesJepsen3pointer
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October 1, 2020 7:45 am

I wonder if Bagley would have been chronically injured if Pete was still around.

Wonderchild
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October 1, 2020 8:45 am

Replacing someone like Pete (experience) for young blood (less cost) may suck, especially for Pete, but it’s a normal business process to remove overhead cost. But removing guys like McClish, Ty Ellis, and Drake U’u is different, and way more concerning. That’s young and upcoming talent right there. Guys that were making a positive difference for this organization. The Stockton Kings were winning games in the G League, developing players, showing promise. They were pretty obviously more organized and better ran than the big team.

Adamsite
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October 1, 2020 8:45 am

Obligatory.
comment image

rubenho
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October 2, 2020 5:59 am

When the Covid lockdown hit Germany in March, a vulture called me out of the blue and asked if I wanted to sell my house now that my little company would obviously be in trouble.

I bet there is a number of billionaires who would fancy the idea of owning a little basketball club. Now this is a buyers market, if you can´t afford an NBA team, you don´t have to own one.

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