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Sacramento Kings waiving Nerlens Noel and Neemias Queta

The Kings made a quick decision on the centers and will allow Queta and Noel to seek other opportunities.
By | 21 Comments | Sep 12, 2023

Jul 13, 2022; Las Vegas, NV, USA; Sacramento Kings center Neemias Queta (88) is pictured during an NBA Summer League game against the Oklahoma City Thunder at Thomas & Mack Center. Mandatory Credit: Stephen R. Sylvanie-USA TODAY Sports

The Sacramento Kings are waiving centers Neemias Queta and Nerlens Noel, as first reported by ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowksi, and confirmed by multiple local reporters.

Queta and Noel were expected to battle for the third string center position in training camp, but the situation changed when JaVale McGee became available and chose to sign with the Kings. Queta and Noel had both been signed to only partially guaranteed contracts, whereas JaVale was given a guaranteed contract right away. The writing was on the wall.

Still, it was unclear if the Kings might still have the two battle in camp and possibly carry four centers into the season. It seemed unlikely, and today’s move confirms the Kings know their big man rotation going into the year.

It makes sense to release Queta and Noel now and give them a chance to latch on with another team for training camp. I’m sure it’s a disappointing turn of events for both players, but it’s good business by the Kings to give them the opportunity before camp roster fill up. It also gives the Kings an opportunity to bring in additional prospects at the wing and point guard positions.

While we never so much as saw Noel in a Kings uniform, it’s a bit sad seeing Queta’s Kings tenure end this way. Selected with the 39th pick of the 2021 Draft, Queta has had great success in the G League but hasn’t been able to demonstrate consistency at the NBA level. He’s still young and has tremendous physical tools, but the development minutes simply weren’t there for him in Sacramento. We’ll be rooting for him to land somewhere else in the NBA and continue his journey.

 

 

 

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RobHessing
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September 12, 2023 3:40 pm

Man, the competency of the front office has literally rendered moments (and gifs) like these moot:
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Klam
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Nostradumbass 18
Nostradumbass 19
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Nostradumbass 18
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September 12, 2023 4:12 pm
Reply to  RobHessing

Oh man, remember when we used to use Titanic GIFs to describe the 16 seasons of misery we had to endure?
“So Vlade, are you ready to be the captain of this Kings team?”
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“When will the Kings ever be good again and be run by competent higher ups?”
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“Hey, you’re a Kings fan! How does feel rooting for this team?”
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Last edited 10 months ago by Klam
Jman1949
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September 12, 2023 4:31 pm
Reply to  Klam

Next up…LIGHT THE BEAM!

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Last edited 10 months ago by Jman1949
NorCalKingsFan
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September 12, 2023 3:43 pm

I firmly believe keeping Len over Queta is a mistake. I would’ve kept McGee and Queta if it were my decision.

IMO, Queta and Len are both equal at this point in time in regards to what they bring to the table while Len’s ability will continue to degrade over time due to age and Queta’s will continue to increase over time due to maturity and experience gained. I understand all the arguments for why Len would be kept over Queta, I just don’t agree with any of them.

It’s a small role again this year (the backup BIG behind Sabonis & Lyles), so this move likely won’t make much of an impact this year either way, but the continued lack of follow-through on young player development is concerning to me.

The Kings lost in the 1st round, so it’s not like keeping an aging but experienced vet over a promising young player will vault them to the Conference Finals; but with that said MM has earned some patience from me so little moves like this are mostly just entertaining though experiments on how we all believe the edges of the roster could be improved.

Hippity_Hop_Barbershop
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September 12, 2023 4:17 pm
Reply to  NorCalKingsFan

I dunno, Len showed up in the playoffs.

DCKing
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September 12, 2023 5:31 pm
Reply to  NorCalKingsFan

This was a bad move– remove the financial situation and go with “potential” and value to the team. I completely agree that Len should not be high on the list, especially since Queta has more value long-term. Noel should have been retained for much longer, unless his lateral movement and athleticism was basically gone (I really doubt that). I think Noel should have stayed for at least another month and Queta maybe until December (see if he had trade value). I worry that McGee is old and a fraction of what we think he is. Not a great move (hopefully it turns out to be small and doesn’t affect us).

ForKingsandCountry
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September 12, 2023 9:11 pm
Reply to  DCKing

Queta doesn’t have any value or he would have been traded for something already. He just hasn’t shown any indication he’s an NBA rotation player. He’s a poor rebounder for someone that big and his reaction is too slow to make an impact.

MichaelMack
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September 12, 2023 9:15 pm

Agreed. Queta has not shown he can play at the NBA level. Very likable, but other than some interesting athleticism, I have seen very little that makes me think he will ever stick at this level.

Adamsite
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Nostradumbass 14
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September 12, 2023 7:27 pm
Reply to  NorCalKingsFan

I disagree. Len has shown he understands the game and system. If there were a way to accurately measure BBall IQ, I’d wager Len has more than Queta, but a lot of that likely comes with experience.

ArcoThunder
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September 13, 2023 11:21 am
Reply to  NorCalKingsFan

The Kings are trying to win now. Having two proven NBA Centers for a role that is this specific makes a ton of sense. I like Queta but it’s true.

murraytant
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September 13, 2023 11:04 pm
Reply to  NorCalKingsFan

Len brought some unique skills to the team. He was far more effective in his limited minutes end of season than Q was early on. I like the idea of Q but not the execution. He was always just a click behind.

I hear the duds are looking at both of them.

This is a mature front office move. They do allow for some waiting for talent to emerge but not in this case.
The two spots can be used for other help.
Monte is so deliberate but then decisive when he wants to be. Cam Payne is the best of the free agent PG’s but not sure if he fits Kings “style”

The bad about this decision- Q needed just a bit more time, has unique skills, is young. Nerlens proved in the past that he can be effective, Never given a chance
The good- less distraction, a clear decision by guys who know a lot.
LAL got Wood (that’s vaguely obscene). He scores but is a head case. I wish they did not get him but I am glad Kings did not pursue him. Wish he would have gone to the Turkish fourth level league.

andy_sims
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September 12, 2023 4:04 pm

Tough decision, but most likely the correct one.

You know that Q is going to drop a 30/20 on us, right?

Hippity_Hop_Barbershop
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September 12, 2023 4:17 pm
Reply to  andy_sims

I’d love to see that actually.

andy_sims
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September 13, 2023 10:32 am

Honestly, I wouldn’t be mad. I’m hoping he finds his groove and has a career. Hell, Hassan Whiteside did it.

AnybodyButBagley
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September 12, 2023 4:26 pm
Reply to  andy_sims

When he is playing the Stockton Kings?

Klam
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Nostradumbass 18
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September 12, 2023 4:56 pm

Got a training camp roster spot:

DCKing
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September 12, 2023 5:32 pm
Reply to  Klam

I would have kept Noel and Queta instead of inviting Ford. He’s decent but won’t play in the NBA in the near future.

ForKingsandCountry
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September 12, 2023 9:12 pm
Reply to  DCKing

… neither will Noel or Queta.

murraytant
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September 13, 2023 11:06 pm

Ford has some Gabe Vincent in him.

RAP87
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September 12, 2023 9:52 pm

I would have kept Mcgee and Noel over Len and Queta. Gives you a different dynamic rather than having a couple of 7 foot back up bigs. I guess Lyles could play the small ball 5 but I would have loved to have Noel be that small ball shot blocking 5.

Mike120
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September 13, 2023 1:19 pm

Doesn’t make a big difference to me. There’s maybe 10 minutes at the C position behind Sabonis and Lyles. Depends on Sabonis remaining the ironman he is.

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