Sacramento Kings: Is A Roster Shakeup Really The Answer?

By Karim Akbar
Steve Dykes – USA TODAY Sports

The arena formerly known as Arco Arena may be rocking these days but it’s the same old story on the court. The Sacramento Kings fell to the Memphis Grizzlies in their last game 97-86 which puts them at 2-7 on the season. DeMarcus Cousins and Isaiah Thomas have been revelations but their inconsistency has contributed greatly to the Kings woes. Troubling times in the kingdom.

Among those troubles are the Kings flat out refusal to win at home. The team has had a pretty cushy slate of games early on but have failed to exploit it. To Sacramento’s credit the team is actually playing good basketball. But you have to play four quarters in this league. You can’t shoot 28 percent in a quarter like the Kings did Sunday and expect to win. You certainly can’t count on Travis Outlaw to put up the breakout game he had. With 18 points and six assists, Outlaw single-handedly gave the Kings life and outplayed multiple starters. With this lack of production doing nothing for Head Coach Michael Malone and the Kings, it’s time for a change.

“On this team, nothing is permanent” Coach Malone stated post-game. I’m sure the Coach means that. If anyone on this team is safe it’s Cousins, his play at times has been all-star worthy. Unfortunately for Cousins, he ends up playing second fiddle to the opposing team’s big men as Cousins has been put in his place recently by LaMarcus AldridgeZach Randolph and DeAndre Jordan. Those are some big names on teams with lots of help, which is scarce on the team. But who deserves to start?

This would be my starting five:

  • PG: Isaiah Thomas
  • SG: Ben McLemore
  • SF: Travis Outlaw
  • PF: Patrick Patterson
  • C: DeMarcus Cousins

Isaiah Thomas is not the pass-first shooter the Kings want but he is the only one giving Sacramento consistent offense. Meanwhile Ben McLemore is a much better choice at the two guard than the struggling John Salmons and Marcus Thornton, even if the rookie does have his faults. Patrick Patterson and Carl Landry are both injured–with Landry out at least two more months–but Patterson should start with Landry backing him up when they return to action. Then you have the star in DeMarcus Cousins who could earn his first all-star selection as the season progresses. He’s been a constant this season on offense but the effort has not translated into more wins which is the goal here. This team may need to improve via a trade that should involve some of the rotation players the Kings aren’t using like Jimmer Fredette or maybe even Thornton.

Either way, the Kings need help and they need lots of it. At 2-7, this team is struggling and a lineup change may just leave everybody worse

Karim Akbar is a Sacramento Kings writer for Follow him on Twitter @Kuhreem , “Like” his RantSports page on Facebook or add him to your network on Google

off than when the season started.

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