How conducive to winning is Ariza? His on/off differential was -1.1 last year for the Rockets (i.e. they were better when he was on the bench). The Rockets were 51-16 in Ariza's 67 games and 14-1 in the 15 games he missed. This idea that Trevor Ariza is going to help a terrible team win games isn't based in statistical reality.
Personally think they will finish ahead of Atlanta, Phoenix, NYK, and Orlando. Possibly Brooklyn and we'll see what Memphis looks like if they falter out of the game and consider dropping Marc Gasol at the deadline.
The Kings were quite arguably the 2nd worst team last season but they only finished 7th worst.
Yeah, the lack of any incentive to tank doesn't stop teams with very little talent that doesn't really fit, an unimpressive coaching staff and a historically poor management from getting high picks. Sacramento fits that description
This is correct, the pick is top 1 protected. The variance between the Philly and Kings picks could be 20+. As bad as losing the pick would be for us, arguably worse is how much it would strengthen one of our toughest rivals.we keep hearing this particular narrative here, yet, i don't see it as holding up when we check history.
The issue is not only is that Philly would be adding the number one pick to an already stacked roster, but they would have 3 choices in RJ Barrett, Nassir Little, and Cam Reddish that would be able to immediately step into their core and fit their timeline. After missing out on Tatum, LeBron, Paul George, and Kawhi Philly needs a stud wing and the 2019 draft could be their best chance at one.
I think the scenario to hope for is that although the Kings have by far one of the worst roster's, they also have no incentive to tank. This mean's that when the Hawks, Knicks, Nets, and Suns of the world start dreaming of high draft picks, Sac will try to pick up some wins to establish their culture. I'd be happy if we end up with any where from 2-7 just to keep the pick out of Philly's hands.
brooklyn had no incentive to tank in either 2016 or 2017, yet they still stunk. as important as any supposed "desire" or plan to tank my be, sometimes rosters simply are filled with bad players and they stink without intentionally tanking.
i am betting that sacramento is one of those stinky teams.
I think the Suns will be better than the Kings. I like your breakdown, but the Suns three best players (Booker, Ayton, Jackson) are arguably better than anyone on Sacramento. They also have the vets like Ryan Anderson, Tyson Chandler, and Trevor Ariza. Then Warren and Bender and Bridges.
I would definitely take their roster over Sacramento’s, but anything can happen as far as W-L.
Agree about Atlanta and New York being worse, those rosters are a mess. I think if Russell can come back and continue to improve can lead the Nets to a slightly better record than the Kings, but will be close. Orlando is a crapshoot, could see them winning 23 or 33.
I have the Suns finishing behind them because I've heard speculation from multiple people I trust that Phoenix will be looking to buy out Trevor Ariza at the deadline. If they sell off some or all of those vets to contenders, they could be right back in the mix for a top pick in the 2019 Draft.
Of course Sac could do the same thing, but then where is the incentive to punt on what your building without being able to influence your draft selection?
Except Sacto doesn't have 1 vet who is as conducive to winning and still as productive as Ariza.
Enlighten us, who had an on/off differential as good as -1.1 last year on the Kings?
Of the young players, Hield was a +7.4, Labissierre was 3.9. Sampson led the team at 8.5 followed by Mason at 7.9. Jackson and WCS were negative but better than Ariza. Richardson was also in the positives as was Temple (who isn't there). Vince Carter had a very strong 4.5 (but he isn't back). Zach Randolph was the worst performer on the Kings in that regard, followed by Fox and Hill (who obviously isn't there). Now the Kings were bad obviously so the only player on the team with a positive +- was Sampson at a whopping 0.1, but the differential absolutely shows the players that are a net positive as opposed to a net negative when they play.
The Suns dumped the only regular rotation young guys they had in the positive for differential (Len, Chriss, and Ulis). Dudley was a monster in that category (+10.
and he is gone also, though lesser minute players like Harrison and Canaan are back and were very good in that area. Warren and Booker weren't terrible each at -0.7, Jackson was pretty bad though at -6.0. Like, the Kings, the Suns were a terrible team overall though Harrison, House, Peters, and Canaan all did have a positive +- overall. Their 3 main vets, Chandler, Anderson, and Ariza all made their teams worse when they were on the court last year. Anderson was the worst of that group at -4.1 with Chandler at -1.3 and Ariza at -1.1.
Now all that said, a lot of that it depends a great deal on who you are playing with, who you are playing against, and the role you have. I think the best way to explain it is to use the Sixers. The Sixers were +12.8 better when Embiid was in the game then when he wasn't. Richaun Holmes almost always came in for Embiid and was rarely on the floor at the same time as Embiid. As a result, Holmes had a differential of -7.9, while Embiid's on/off was boosted because his backups weren't very good (both Holmes and Johnson).