By: Morgan Ragan
Changes will be coming to the Kings lineup—at least that’s the message from first year head coach Michael Malone following the Kings fifth straight loss on Saturday night.
After losing to Portland in back-to-back games including Saturday night at Sleep Train Arena 96-85, Malone said he’s given this lineup enough opportunities and is ready to make whatever changes it takes to get a win.
“I’ve seen enough at this point,” Malone said. “We’ve played six games and it is more than a broken record. We’ll make changes and try to give ourselves a better chance to win.”
15,482 attended the game but the crowd was subdued most of the night watching the Kings sluggish performance. The loudest Sleep Train Arena peaked was when a fan made the half court shot and won a new car during a timeout.
The lack of noise was not the fans fault. The lack of noise was caused by the lack of effort seen from the Kings.
Passion and determination is something Malone can’t teach his players. If this team doesn’t realize they lack talent but can make up for that lack of talent with 48 minutes of relentless effort, then they will not win any time soon.
19 was the magic number in the Kings 1-5 start. The Blazers had 19 offensive rebounds and Portland outrebounded Sacramento by 19 with a rebounding advantage of 52-33.
“You don’t need great skill to be a guy that rebounds. Being a good rebounder is about effort, determination, physicality and we lacked all those tonight,” Malone said.
Analysis: After another Kings loss like this one, some may say that this roster just doesn’t have the talent. These players are all at the professional level for a reason and the fight to win with a consistent effort would go a long way for this group.
Malone said it best after the game: “The question I have for our guys is, do you like to win or do you hate to lose? Right now I am not so sure we have guys that hate to lose.”
You can hear Morgan with Deuce & J-Ross from 12-3 p.m. on KHTK. Follow her on Twitter: @momoragan