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The Top 50 Sacramento Kings of All-Time: 30-21

We continue our list of the greatest Sacramento Kings of all-time.

Welcome to Part 3 of the incredibly official and statistical ranking of the Top 50 Sacramento Kings of all time.  To help calculate these rankings, I am using the very official and very mathematical "KANGZ (Kinda Accurate Net GainZ) score) which factors in a players tenure, role, intangibles and individual and team success.  A perfect KANGZ score is a 25.  In the case of a tie, which happened quite a bit in this section, I went with my impeccable and infallible judgement.

On to the list!

Previously: 50-41 / 40-31

30. Hedo Türkoğlu

KANGZ Score: 14.3
221 GP, 7.5 PPG, .420 FG%, .358 3P%, 3.4 RPG, 1.4 APG, 0.6 STL, 0.3 BLK

Geoff Petrie made a habit of doing his own thing in the NBA draft.  Until the Maloofs started interfering, I'd say he was doing a pretty good job for himself.  While Hedo was far from the best player that Petrie drafted, he might just have been the most impressive, because looking back, it's debatable that Türkoğlu was the best player in his entire draft.  Hedo's career was made after the Kings, but one wonders what might have been had he stayed.  The Kings ended up trading him to San Antonio as part of a deal that netted them Brad Miller, as they needed big man help following C-Webb's knee injury.  Hedo had some fun moments while he was a King, including in the playoffs.  In fact, Hedo was the first Kings player I ever met in person.  I can tell you the exact date too; It was March 12th, 2001.  I was eating lunch with my family at the Greek Village Inn in Sacramento and my dad noticed Hedo sit down at a table outside and told me to go say hello.  I was super shy so I didn't want to go but eventually built up the courage on our way out.  I told him "Good luck tomorrow against the Lakers!" He smiled and said thank you and my day was made. It was even better the next day when Hedo dropped 22 points on 8 of 10 from the field.  Naturally, I told everyone I knew that Hedo had such a good game because I had inspired him.

29. Brian Grant

KANGZ Score: 14.3
182 GP, 13.4 PPG, .501 FG%, 7.1 RPG, 1.4 APG, 0.6 STL, 1.3 BLK

Brian Grant had the honor of being the first draft pick of the Geoff Petrie era.  Like most things Petrie did in the early part of his Kings career, the pick was a home run.  Grant gave Mitch Richmond a young up and coming big man and the Kings started to actually win games for the first time in the 90s.  Grant looked the part of a future star, but a major leg injury early in the 1996-97 season cost him most of the season and he signed a multi-year deal with the Portland Trail Blazers the next season, ending his tenure with the Kings.  Grant today is best known for his work in helping those with Parkinson's disease, an affliction he also suffers from.

28. LaSalle Thompson

KANGZ Score: 14.4
274 GP, 11.4 PPG, .487 FG%, 8.3 RPG, 1.5 APG, 0.9 STL, 1.3 BLK
6th All-Time in Blocks (363)
9th All-Time in Offensive Rebounds (747)
10th All-Time in Total Rebounds (2,276)

LaSalle "Tank" Thompson was the Kings starting center when they arrived in Sacramento from Kansas City.  He wasn't the flashiest player and he didn't put up huge numbers, but he was dependable and remained a local fixture long after his career ended.  Thompson even helped the Kings when he left Sacramento, as the Kings acquired one of their earliest stars, Wayman Tisdale.  If the Kings had been a bit better during LaSalle's time with the Kings, he'd probably end up much higher on this list.

27. Spud Webb

KANGZ Score: 14.5
301 GP, 13.7 PPG, .445 FG%, .331 3P%, 2.7 RPG, 6.7 APG, 1.3 STL, 0.2 BLK
3rd All-Time in Assists (2,024)
8th All-Time in FT% (.862)
9th All-Time in Steals (397)

The diminutive 5'6 Spud Webb is best known for his time with the Atlanta Hawks despite having his best years as a player with the Sacramento Kings.  That's probably because while Webb was with the Kings, they were miserable.  When Mitch Richmond was traded to Sacramento, Webb famously greeted him that first day of practice with the words "Welcome to Basketball Hell".  It was a testament to Webb's skill and athleticism (he was a former Slam Dunk champion) that he was able to make it at the NBA level despite being just 5'6.  Webb was one of the better passers in the Sacramento era and a solid shooter.

26. Jason Thompson

KANGZ Score: 15
541 GP, 9.4 PPG, .497 FG%, 6.9 RPG, 1.1 APG, 0.5 STL, 0.7 BLK
1st All-Time in Games Played (541)
2nd All-Time in Offensive Rebounds (1,232)
3rd All-Time in Total Rebounds (3,746)
5th All-Time in Defensive Rebounds (2,514)
5th All-Time in Blocks (394)
6th All-Time in Minutes Played (14,348)
8th All-Time in Field Goals Made (2,060)

If it weren't for Jason Thompson, I might not be writing this post today. It was because of the Kings shocking decision to draft Thompson with the 12th pick in 2008 that I discovered Sactown Royalty and went on to become a writer.  Thompson was Sacramento's second lottery pick in a row after Spencer Hawes, and with the selection the Kings hoped that they could recreate some of the magic of the Vlade/C-Webb days.  Needless to say that didn't happen.  As a player, Thompson was reliable, bringing energy and effort each and every night.  On a better team, Thompson would have been loved as a bench big, but on the Kings he started most of his career.  He also rarely missed games and by the time his Kings career ended, he had played the most regular season games in the Sacramento-era. In the end, Thompson had a better career than several of the players picked around him in that draft, and might have even had a better one if he just hadn't had the bad luck of being drafted to the Sacramento Kings during one of the most tumultuous eras for the franchise.

25. Francisco García

KANGZ Score: 15
462 GP, 8.3 PPG, .433 FG%, .360 3P%, 2.7 RPG, 1.4 APG, 0.8 STL, 0.7 BLK
5th All-Time in 3 Pointers Made (475)
7th All-Time in Games Played (462)
9th All-Time in Blocks (343)
10th All-Time in Steals (391)

Much like Jason Thompson, 'Cisco was a staple on the Kings for a long time.  Along with Kevin Martin, he was a transitional player from the glory-era teams to the still rebuilding teams of today.  Cisco's ability to handle the ball and shoot even saw the Kings experiment (briefly) with a big backcourt lineup that featured both him and Martin.  Multiple freak injuries (a medicine ball popping!) derailed his career from being what it could have been, and he evolved from a once promising wing to a veteran mentor who all his teammates loved.  Tyreke Evans loved him so much that when he came back to Sacramento, he wore #32 in his honor.  El Flaco wasn't the best player, but he was a bright light in a dark time.

24. Bogdan Bogdanović

KANGZ Score: 15
201 GP, 13.3 PPG, .432 FG%, .370 3P%, 3.2 RPG, 3.5 APG, 1.0 STL, 0.2 BLK

It didn't take long for Bogdan Bogdanovic to make a name for himself when he came to Sacramento.  Already a star in Europe, Bogdanovic wasn't really a "rookie" in the same sense that most players who debut in the NBA are.  Coach Dave Joerger immediately thrust Bogdanovic into a big role.  In his three seasons so far with the Kings, Bogdanovic has shown a tendency to make big shots in big moments.  In three seasons, Bogdanovic has at least five game-winners already.  He's the most clutch player the Kings have had since Mike Bibby.  Bogi also tends to run hot and cold, and has spent nearly three years playing non-stop basketball with international play included.  Hopefully this quarantine is allowing him to get some much needed rest.

23. Buddy Hield

KANGZ Score: 15
251 GP, 17.6 PPG, .448 FG%, .417 3P%, 4.5 RPG, 2.4 APG, 0.9 STL, 0.3 BLK
3rd All-Time in 3P% (.417)
4th All-Time in 3 Pointers Made (757)
4th All-Time in FT% (.868)

I never thought I'd see a shooter as good as Peja Stojakovic don a Kings uniform again.  Buddy Hield is quickly making a case and is on pace to shatter all franchise records for three pointers made.  Last season he broke Peja's record for most three pointers made in one season and this season he actually made more threes (244) than twos (212).  Despite the season being cut short, that 244 three pointers made was still good for the 2nd most three pointers made in a single season.  Buddy is also an ironman, having missed just two games in his career so far.  Buddy can be frustrating some times when he tries to do a little too much, but the good far outweighs the bad.

22. Rudy Gay

KANGZ Score: 15
223 GP, 19.3 PPG, .464 FG%, .347 3P%, 6.0 RPG, 2.8 APG, 1.3 STL, 0.7 BLK

We actually found something good that Pete D'Alessandro did in his time in Sacramento!  Acquiring Rudy Gay for Chuck Hayes, Patrick Patterson, John Salmons and Greivis Vasquez was a win-win for both teams.  Gay was struggling being the number one option in Toronto and the Kings desperately needed both help at the wing and a secondary star for DeMarcus Cousins.  Gay helped fill both roles.  Under Mike Malone, the trio of Cousins/Gay/Isaiah Thomas looked to be the future core of a solid team, and the Kings managed to use that promising future to convince Rudy to re-sign... and then promptly blew that future up by firing Mike Malone shortly into the next season.  Rudy's Kings career ended abruptly in 2017 when he suffered a ruptured Achilles tendon in a game against the Pacers.  While he hasn't been the same player since, he's carved out a nice role for himself over the last few seasons a supporting member on the San Antonio Spurs.

21. Bonzi Wells

KANGZ Score: 15.5
52 GP, .463 FG%, 13.6 PPG, 7.7 RPG, 2.8 APG, 1.8 STL, 0.5 BLK

Ah Bonzi Wells, the greatest one-hit wonder in Sacramento Kings history.  Bonzi came to the Kings in 2005 in a trade with Memphis for Bobby Jackson.  Kings fans weren't thrilled with losing a fan favorite in Bobby, but boy did Bonzi deliver.  While Bonzi's regular season performance was solid, it was his performance in the postseason that really stood out. Bonzi really stepped it up in the playoffs against the Spurs, averaging 23.2 PPG and 12.0 RPG as the 8th seeded Kings pushed the 1st seeded San Antonio Spurs to the limit.  That was 14 years ago now, and it still remains the last time the Kings made the playoffs.  After that series, the Kings threw a 5 year, $38.5 million contract at Bonzi.  Back then, that was star level money and nobody was throwing that kind of money at Bonzi despite his heroic playoff performance.  Amazing, Bonzi's agent turned down the deal.  Needless to say he was fired shortly thereafter when free agency money dried up.  Bonzi only ended up playing a couple more years in the NBA after that.  What could have been... (probably another bloated contract that we would have had to get rid of in a season or two and not nearly as many fond memories).

Tomorrow: 20-11

 

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SanjeshSingh
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May 20, 2020 10:17 am

The Rudy/Boogie/IT trio gave me so much hope…only to go down in #KANGZ fashion

MyHumbleOpinion
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May 20, 2020 10:50 am
Reply to  SanjeshSingh

I was hopeful as well until I went to a game and saw Cousins screaming at IT during multiple time outs. It seemed that Cousins was displeased with IT not passing the ball to him. It was then that my hope began to evaporate.

TheFifthMookie
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May 20, 2020 11:20 am
Reply to  SanjeshSingh

I remember the beginning of that season so well. They were in a close game and I was eating out at one-speed and watched it – and for the first time since 2003 I was excited about the team again. Then a few games later Cousins got Mono or whatever it was, then within a month Malone was canned.

Ah KANGS memoriez

Klam
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May 20, 2020 11:22 am
Reply to  TheFifthMookie

The start of the 2014-15 season was a nice one month of exciting basketball where the Kings actually had a chance to win every game. Even with all the ugly moments in that span (losing to Memphis with 0.3 seconds, and that game was on my birthday…), it was a really nice span until Malone got canned. Sigh.

TheFifthMookie
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May 20, 2020 11:24 am
Reply to  Klam

it was the last time that I was legitimately hopeful about a kings season. Even the good Joerger year was tarnished for me because my instincts told me they were going to KANGS it up in the offseason (and boy did they).

Klam
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May 20, 2020 11:29 am
Reply to  TheFifthMookie

When that first report of Joerger possibly getting fired around November leaked out, I had a bad feeling that that was going to be an unsalvageable problem.

Migz
May 20, 2020 3:16 pm
Reply to  SanjeshSingh

This is the 7th year of Malone’s Kings tenure within the league-avg FO competency dimension

Klam
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May 20, 2020 10:34 am

I don’t remember it, but my Dad says that when we were at Caffe Latte in Sac we saw Briant Grant sitting outside eating. Don’t remember if he said whether we went up to say hi, but would’ve been cool if we did.

SanjeshSingh
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May 20, 2020 10:38 am
Reply to  Klam

I met Boogie at a Jack in the Box in Stockton

Marty
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May 20, 2020 11:27 am
Reply to  Klam

My wife and I spent some time with Grant at his hotel, when he returned to SAC promoting his foundation. Real life hero right there, I get emotional just thinking about it.

MichaelMack
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May 20, 2020 10:41 am

This is great stuff Aykis.

1951
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May 20, 2020 10:47 am

All these guys should be somewhere on the list, so that’s good.

Bogi and Bonzi are a bit too high for me. Bogi likely benefits from some recency bias because he is not better than Ainge or Smith, as examples.

Bonzi is too high just because 52 games isn’t a great sample size. That said, that was a really fun end of the season and that series against the Spurs was awesome, largely because of Bonzi.

I’ll wait to see the rest of the lists, but Rudy could be a bit underrated here. We shall see!

Kfan
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May 20, 2020 6:13 pm
Reply to  1951

Agree for the most part. I also have fond memories of that KMart game winner in that Spurs series.

BestHyperboleEver
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May 20, 2020 10:57 am

Huh. Bonzi above above guys like Gay, Hield, Bogdan, even Hedo.

Bonzi…

Bonzi Wells…,

Huh.

Fun Fact: Bonzi’s TS% for the Kings that season was 50.7. He had a 22.4 USG, tied for the team lead with 2.4 TOs per game while dishing out a whopping 2.8 Asts. He was…. not good. The playoff series was certainly fun though. Even if it wasn’t nearly as close as the 4-2 would make it look.

Otis
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May 20, 2020 11:12 am

Or IT.

1951
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May 20, 2020 11:36 am
Reply to  Otis

Good point. Especially if “likability” and other non-performance stuff are factors. IT fought for this city even though he was from Seattle.

No way he should be below Bonzi, whether based on performance or other.

BestHyperboleEver
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May 20, 2020 11:39 am
Reply to  Otis

Oh yeah, I was just talking about guys on this installment. IT should be WAY above Bonzi.

RORDOG
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May 20, 2020 10:59 am

LaSalle Thompson slander:
comment image

MichaelMack
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May 20, 2020 11:31 am
Reply to  RORDOG

Exactly. I was surprised to see him that low.

I thought I would see McCray, Ainge, and Chilcutt at this level.

Greg
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May 20, 2020 11:07 am

I once saw Hedo at the UA Olympus Pointe theater in Roseville. He and Peja walked in and were immediately surrounded by a throng of fans. The two of them towered over everyone else, reminding me that even the mid-sized guys in the NBA are giants.

TheFifthMookie
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May 20, 2020 11:08 am

awww man, JT getting done dirty! How could you put the Kings leader in Games Played so far down?

Also, Francisco played in waaaaaaaaaay more games than I remembered!

sactownchad
May 20, 2020 12:19 pm
Reply to  TheFifthMookie

It’s really scary how much of our collective Kings fandom is dominated by games with JT on the court. Mostly middling, or worse, doldrums of Kings basketball. The numbers do say more about longevity over talent. Imagining a healthy Webber in his prim over this time period here.

TheFifthMookie
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May 20, 2020 12:34 pm
Reply to  sactownchad

Cold World! Nobody appreciates JT!

I’m totally clowning here, just for the record.

ZillersCat
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May 20, 2020 3:04 pm
Reply to  TheFifthMookie

Sacto_J
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May 20, 2020 12:26 pm

Grant was the first Kings jersey I ever bought. Not sure what happened to it, oddly, but I loved it and the player it represented and I think he deserves to be higher on this list.
Also, Bonzi and Spudd should be flip flopped. Spudd was so good, especially by the time he got to the Kings and the highlight clip – I actually remember that game, was about the time I started getting into the Kings and was still a Laker fan at the time. They really weren’t that good but were so fun to root for.
Lastly, I feel like Nick Anderson could possibly be the greatest flash in the pan in Sacramento history, if only because he brought playoff pedigree to a then unknown team and helped raise the bar of expectations a little, played a largely complimentary role (which was unusual considering he could have played anywhere before signing here) en route to the teams first playoff trip in years and then just kind of fell off the map. Obviously we made some noise with having Webber, J-Will and company, but Nick was a big catalyst to lending credibility and clout to what we were doing, as far as the national media was concerned. And, for that one season, he was a huge part of our success despite his less than stellar statistical impact. I’ve often thought the team was repeatedly tried to re-capture that with signing guys like Jim Jackson and Bonzi Wells.

SacTownYeti
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May 20, 2020 12:34 pm

The Brian Grant / Sarunas / Mitch team still is a great memory. Our team was gritty as hell and gave the Sonics a legit run in the playoffs!

€œRattle Seattle!€ (If you know, you know)

Nardell
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May 20, 2020 12:57 pm
Reply to  SacTownYeti

That broke my heart when The Rock rolled his ankle.

MyHumbleOpinion
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May 20, 2020 1:16 pm
Reply to  SacTownYeti

That was a fun team. Tough, physical and defense oriented. I remember Bobby Hurley getting knocked down on a lay up. It looked like Michael Smith was about to kill the guy that hit him. I felt they might be a team that could make some noise.

Migz
May 20, 2020 1:32 pm
Reply to  SacTownYeti

Grant should he higher. Def should be higher than JT. I get it with the longevity but there’s drastic difference in skill/effectiveness.

Sarunas was like an immovable object, which was really odd to see at his size.

Loved the Rattle Seattle team!

Greg
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May 20, 2020 2:02 pm
Reply to  SacTownYeti

I loved that team.

Marty
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May 20, 2020 1:01 pm

This goofy-ass article has more comments in two hours than STR’s last six articles, combined.

Y’all were so right but still crazy AF.

TheFifthMookie
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May 20, 2020 1:04 pm
Reply to  Marty

I can get Lakers-Tangential news anywhere, so why would I go a purple branded site for it?

Greg
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May 20, 2020 2:51 pm
Reply to  Aykis16

Seconded. It truly is wonderful to see.

Kfan
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May 20, 2020 6:15 pm
Reply to  Greg

Yes. Yes

Nardell
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May 20, 2020 1:07 pm

This series of articles has brought back many Kings-related childhood memories for me. I got Brian Grant’s autograph at Incredible Universe when I was roughly 10 or 11 years old. The lines were super long and he stayed after the cutoff time (unlike a few other players) to sign for everyone in line. It was a cool move on his part.

Sacto_J
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May 30, 2020 11:27 am
Reply to  Nardell

For those who don’t know, Incredible Universe is now Frye’s Electronics in Natomas and it was one of the coolest stores, it was quite literally Disneyland for computer and sound / audio geeks. I don’t recall if the Sacramento one had costumes and characters, but the SoCal one I went to did.

rockbottom
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May 20, 2020 1:19 pm

Enjoyed the list and Ainge was a top Five in the short Kings run ! Also, Spud never said welcome to Basketball Hell ! That was Bobby Hansen !

mbcarval
May 20, 2020 1:24 pm

Great to be back! Just registered, long live the real STR.

Adamsite
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Nostradumbass 14
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May 20, 2020 1:38 pm

Side story, I ran into JT multiple times at Harv’s Car Wash in Sac. He was always extremely approachable and genuine. The dude also had some really nice cars. That’s right, more than one.

I also ran into Greene standing in line at the food court at the Galleria in Roseville. I asked him about that very video with the popcorn. I remember him saying, “It was that fool Spencer.” who pulled the prank on JT. I’m pleased as hell the Spencer Hawes is no where on the all time Kings list. That is unless we make a list of the Kings biggest assholes.

Marty
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May 20, 2020 1:44 pm
Reply to  Adamsite

Dude that’s crazy, I’ve seen him at Harv’s as well.

Adamsite
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Nostradumbass 14
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May 20, 2020 1:59 pm
Reply to  Marty

I’ve probably only been there about a dozen times or less, but to run into him there at least 3 times tells me he frequented the place quite a bit. Maybe he has a thing for clean cars. I know for a fact he has a thing for expensive cars.

Kosta
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May 20, 2020 1:44 pm
Reply to  Adamsite

Unless Hawes is on the next list! 🙁

Kfan
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May 20, 2020 6:17 pm
Reply to  Aykis16

He should get an honorable mention for best T-Shirt wear. And that’s all
comment image

Kfan
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May 20, 2020 6:18 pm
Reply to  Kfan

On a side note. I think it would be cool if we could get a preview comment option

Kosta
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May 20, 2020 1:51 pm

Question: If we had drafted Luka Doncic, would he be in the top 10 on this list?

Adamsite
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May 20, 2020 2:01 pm
Reply to  Kosta

If the Kings were a playoff team right now, he might be. Considering the majority of the top 10 are going to be glory era Kings and Mitch, if you can lead the Kings to the playoffs, you’re a legend.

SniperKing
May 20, 2020 2:04 pm

Help me with naming this Kings player? I’m going off memory: He played in late 80’s early 90’s; it appeared that injuries curtailed his career; I recall he came back to play in the last 8-10 games of one season and was scoring 25+ pts per game, and was looking fwd to seeing him play more the following season, but for whatever reason, he wasn’t re-signed. Die-hards, who is this player?

SniperKing
May 20, 2020 2:23 pm
Reply to  SniperKing

Ok, did some googling and I found him. I was just curious how long he played for the Kings and what happened to him? And if he did anything to qualify for this list? The answer is no. Turns out all his injuries made him a journeyman type player.

Anyone want to take a stab at guessing who this player is? Hint: he was a teammate of Brook Steppe.

SniperKing
May 20, 2020 2:34 pm
Reply to  Aykis16

Bingo, that’s him. Back then I was mainly following through the boxscores and news articles of the sports pages. I kept seeing this ‘new guy’ (Smith) late in the season filling up the stat sheet and was wondering who he was and where did the Kings find him. I learned that he was coming off an injury. It was fun following him in that short period of time. I thought he brought a glimmer of hope to a then-dreadful team. sigh.. I also just learned via wikipedia that he died of a heart attack while on a cruise promoting basketball shortly after his career ended. Sad story.

BestHyperboleEver
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May 20, 2020 2:45 pm
Reply to  SniperKing

1989 may very well be the nadir of Sacramento Kings fandom. Which is saying something.

Kenny Smith, healthy Derek Smith, Ricky Berry, and a Pressley/Pickney/Tisdale front court would be a pretty exciting young core.

But then…

SniperKing
May 20, 2020 2:53 pm
Reply to  SniperKing

This Celtic’s blog article pretty much summed up Derek Smith for me when he was with the Kings. He gave a kid like me hope that he was going to help turn the Kings around.

“As a kid, I was all about stats, and knew he’d put up 22 ppg while shooting 53% from the field in 80 games back in the 1984-85 season with the Clippers.”

http://www.celticslife.com/2010/02/remembering-derek-smith.html

RORDOG
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May 21, 2020 12:25 am

One thing that just kinda sucks is the *big word that I’m not sure if I’m using correctly alert!* bifurcation of the comments section from StR to TKH. Eventually this will change, but it sucks I can’t go down a rabbit hole of threads via the kings herald as of yet. This isn’t a criticism of the new site; just general commentary about the sands of time.

I don’t know how I got there, but somehow I stumbled upon Fireplug’s fanpost in which he attempted to use passes per time of possession to explain why the Kings decided to trade IT. It’s basically the same people in this thread (sans Fireplug) just 6 years younger. Obviously we’re all much more stunningly attractive and wealthier now, so that’s good. It just feels like StR was Arco and TKH is G1C if that makes sense.

Otis
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May 21, 2020 9:36 am
Reply to  RORDOG

Man, I remember that thread. Decent amount of Ray McCallum love, IIRC.

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