November 18, 2018, 4:33 pm
For most Kings fans coaching changes, even surprising mid-season ones, are far from unusual. Starting with the abrupt dismissal of Mike Malone in December 2014, the Kings became a franchise defined by their inability to properly handle their head coaching situation.
Dave Joerger may not have been able to lead the team to many wins during his first two years, but he did provide some consistency that the team desperately needed. Following an 8-7 start to the 2018-19 season, replacing Joerger didn’t even seem like a remote possibility.
Despite his recent success, a report from Chris Haynes of Yahoo! Sports just before the Kings’ game in Houston put the team right back in the middle of an unsavory coaching story:
Yahoo Sources: There’s growing discord between Sacramento Kings and Dave Joerger that could eventually lead to change. https://t.co/THzErzZt8D
— Chris Haynes (@ChrisBHaynes) November 18, 2018
Replacing Joerger after the team’s better-than-expected start would be a colossal mistake for many different reasons. On the court, a head coaching change could severely impact the development of the team’s young talent, and off the court it would be deflating for a fan base that is finally starting to see the light at the end of a 13-year long tunnel.
One top of that, the biggest impact would probably be to the team’s reputation around the league. Sacramento will always be at a slight disadvantage when looking to hire top talent just by the virtue of being in a smaller market, but the team has put themselves even further behind in the past with foolish decisions. Their recent success has clearly helped change their reputation, but firing Joerger would be throwing out all of the ethos they’ve gained, plus some.
With those notes out of the way, it’s worth pointing out that from the very beginning the report didn’t really make much sense:
There appears to be a substantial disconnect between the Sacramento Kings’ front office and head coach Dave Joerger pertaining to the franchise’s priorities and direction, sources told Yahoo Sports.
It’s win now vs. development for the future.
This is not a knock on Chris Haynes’ reporting, it’s a knock on the idea that Joerger is prioritizing winning over development. There is an argument to be made that players like Skal Labissiere, Harry Giles and even Marvin Bagley would have seen more time on the floor this season if the Kings were not winning as many games, but the fact is that the Kings have been led to this start by a breakout season from De’Aaron Fox, and improved play from players like Buddy Hield and Willie Cauley-Stein. Fewer wins to start the season would not have meant less playing time for veterans, it more likely would have been less playing time for some of the team’s most promising young players.
This isn’t to say that the there’s no room to nitpick here. It wouldn’t be surprising to hear that the front office has a few small recommendations that they would like to make, but that’s probably true for most teams. If the front office is truly ready to move on from Joerger because of what can only be described as minor disagreements regarding the rotations, then there probably isn’t a coach out there that can provide what they’re looking for.
It’s hard to believe that this is a possibility in the near future, and a statement released by Vlade Divac shortly after the report made it seem even less likely:
From Vlade Divac, General Manager, Sacramento Kings on the Dave Joerger story from earlier today:
“Dave has our full support and confidence. We continue to work together to develop our young core and compete.”
— James Ham (@James_HamNBCS) November 18, 2018
Based on the statement, it would be surprising to see a change in the near future, but the Kings are no strangers to surprising moves. The team has been able to repair some of the damage that’s been done to their reputation over the last few seasons, but in many ways this report represents their first real test. If they can handle this report properly and move past it, they should be able to continue on the promising path that they’ve been on this year, but if they can’t put an end to this soon they run the risk of ending up right back where they started.
November 18, 2019, 12:16 amKyle KuzmaPF, Los Angeles Lakers
Kyle Kuzma dropped 17 points on 6-of-14 shooting in a win over the Hawks on Sunday.
Kuzma is back into the swing of things and should cruise to late-round value. He added five rebounds, three triples and one block to the stat sheet.
November 18, 2019, 12:13 amLeBron JamesSF, Los Angeles Lakers
LeBron James double-doubled in a 122-101 win against the Hawks on Sunday as he put up 33 points and 12 assists.
James shot 13-of-21 from the field and 6-of-10 from beyond the arc. He also grabbed seven boards and added one steal and one block to the box score. James' co-star Anthony Davis had an off night with 14 points on 5-of-14 shooting with five assists and five blocks. Both guys are locks for top-15 value.
November 18, 2019, 12:10 amRajon RondoPG, Los Angeles Lakers
Rajon Rondo played well on Sunday as he put up 15 points on 5-of-9 shooting in a blowout win over the Hawks.
Rondo played 24 minutes, which is a season-high. He knocked down two 3-pointers and added three assists to the stat sheet. Alex Caruso played 21 minutes and had 11 points on 5-of-7 shooting. Rondo will likely be the preferred option of the two when his minutes restriction is lifted, but neither guy is worth owning in standard formats.
November 18, 2019, 12:06 amKentavious Caldwell-PopeSG, Los Angeles Lakers
Kentavious Caldwell-Pope started for Avery Bradley (leg) and put up 13 points on 6-of-8 shooting in a win over the Hawks on Sunday.
KCP played just 21 minutes as the majority of this game was out of reach. Danny Green chipped in 11 points with seven rebounds, two steals and two blocks on 4-of-7 shooting. Green provides late-round value and is worth owning in most formats, while KCP is a streaming option while Bradley is out.
November 18, 2019, 12:02 amTrae YoungPG, Atlanta Hawks
Trae Young scored 31 points on 11-of-22 shooting in 39 minutes of action in a 122-101 loss to the Lakers on Sunday.
Young turned the ball over eight times and shot just 2-of-8 from beyond the arc. He dished out seven assists and grabbed two steals as well. Young is going to produce top-20/30 value this season in 8/9-cat formats.
November 17, 2019, 11:59 pmJabari ParkerPF, Atlanta Hawks
Jabari Parker put up 11 points on 5-of-16 shooting with four steals in a blowout loss to the Lakers on Sunday.
Parker has played well as of late, but this was not his best performance. He added eight rebounds, one assist and one block to the box score. Cam Reddish chipped in 11 points with three steals on 5-of-13 shooting. Reddish is still figuring out how his game translates to the NBA and can be left on the waiver wire. However, Parker should be owned in all formats.
November 17, 2019, 11:56 pmChandler ParsonsSF, Atlanta Hawks
Chandler Parsons played two minutes against the Lakers on Sunday and did not record a stat.
Parsons managed to have a plus/minus of minus-10 in just two minutes of action. He will not have much of a role with the Hawks this season regardless of injuries.
November 17, 2019, 10:05 pmEric PaschallPF, Golden State Warriors
Eric Paschall took control of the Warriors' offense on Sunday vs. the Pelicans, contributing 30 points (10-of-17 FG, 8-of-10 FT), seven rebounds and two 3-pointers.
Paschall was cooking in this one, and he has now scored 15 or more points in six out of his last eight games. D'Angelo Russell will be out for a couple weeks at minimum, and Paschall faces few challenges for touches from the remaining healthy bodies. He is not going to deliver many hustle stats or assists, but he has an excellent runway to pile up efficient points and steady rebounding figures to create mid-round value.
November 17, 2019, 9:58 pmDraymond GreenPF, Golden State Warriors
Draymond Green struggled from the field (2-of-10 FG) on Sunday, but was able to deliver six rebounds, four assists, two steals, one block and one 3-pointer.
This is a realistic expectation for what Draymond can deliver alongside the kids left on the Warriors. He is not going to deliver the early-round production many were projecting for this season, but he will still create plenty of hustle stats while going for mid-round value.
November 17, 2019, 9:51 pmE'Twaun MooreSG, New Orleans Pelicans
E'Twaun Moore put up 10 points and seven rebounds in a win over the Warriors on Sunday.
Moore put up 14,15 and 18 points in his previous three contests, so he cooled off in this one. However, he was limited to just 24 minutes as he had five fouls. Kenrich Williams also had a lackluster performance as he put up five points, 10 rebounds and four assists on 2-of-8 shooting. Williams has provided late-round value over the last two weeks and is a solid streaming option when the Pelicans are missing some key players due to injury. Moore is a deep-league scoring and shooting option, but his value disappears when Lonzo Ball, Brandon Ingram, Josh Hart and Frank Jackson return to the court.