Good-bye, Willie Cauley Stein

Au revoir to Willie Cauley-Stein, the often criticized, much maligned, polarizing Kings center who, quite honestly, hit on all his pre-draft projections and turned out to be a rotational big with some decent skills and athleticism, but a lot left to be desired.

Willie says he doesn’t even want the Kings to offer him the Qualifying Offer and is instead looking for a clean break-up.  Kings fans, I can confidently say, feel the same.

WCS averaged 12 points and eight rebounds in 27 minutes per game this last season.  He ran the floor very well and was capable of switching onto smaller defenders on the perimeter.  He isn’t a bad passer, and I personally think his mid-range shot has some life, but he never took it.  But he was a liability at the line, he was never a reliable bucket, was somewhat timid attacking out of the roll, and perhaps most frustrating…not the imposing shot-blocker you would expect from a 7 foot hyper-athletic big.

Will WCS make the Kings and their fanbase regret the years of shit-talking?  Where will he go?  What really is his goal as a professional athlete?

  1.  No.
  2. Who cares?
  3. To look cool.

A football team in Vegas is stupid, but a game in Vegas is not

The title says it all.

The Raiders are supposed to move to Las Vegas soon.  There is a stadium being constructed.  It will surely happen–professional football in Las Vegas for at least a few seasons.  Unprecedented, really, for the Raiders and the city of Oakland’s dysfunctional marriage to play out like this.  The Raiders move out for a while, date around, then eventually come back home.  A tale as old as time. Continue reading “A football team in Vegas is stupid, but a game in Vegas is not”

Lakers trade for Anthony Davis

After months of public posturing, our Anthony Davis nightmare is over.  The widely-heralded, semi-overrated forward was traded from the dumpster that is New Orleans professional basketball to the Rich Paul AAU All-Stars of Los Angeles.  Does this make either team better?  I don’t know.  It means both teams can move on, and the public can move on, from perhaps the most stale story in sports. Continue reading “Lakers trade for Anthony Davis”

NBA Trash Report: Sacramento’s Justin Jackson is king of the dumpster

Sacramento is a city on the upswing.  Money is pouring in to make California’s Capitol a big time player in politics, tech, art, education, etc.  We are trying to become a destination rather than departing juncture.  But in the midst of the expansion comes gentrification, and Sacramento’s homeless epidemic is a real hot-button issue in the area.  From 2015 to 2017, the transient population in Sacramento rose 30%.

And after last night’s game against the Utah Jazz, the city has another bum to add to the list:  Justin Jackson.

Here’s a screenshot that just begins to scratch the surface Jackson’s impact last night:

justin jackson

That is some ripe garbage!  Jackson, who had one good year shooting on a stacked national title team, came into the league marketed as an NBA ready catch and shoot threat.  But in his time with the Kings, he’s reverted back to a trash baby shooter who possesses none of the athleticism needed to be a complete wing.  And despite shooting just 30% from deep last season, Jackson took four attempts from beyond the arc last night.  He missed them all.

But the frustration with Jackson is more than just his poop offense and poop defense.  It’s the fact that the Kings were actually in a position to beat Utah last night and, for some reason, kept riding the Jackson Junction.  With five minutes left to go in the third, old Blue Balls checked into a 78-78 ballgame.  Inexplicably, he played the remainder of the game, which ended 123-117 for the Jazz.

Here’s Jackson playing soft on the break:

And here’s Jackson screwing up an easy two points that led to a four point swing:

Love the sound clip from Grant Napear here:

“Jackson…JACKSON!  OH MY GOODNESS!  Almost a disaster!”

No Grant, it was a disaster.  Justin Jackson is a disaster.

When asked for comment on why Justin Jackson played 17 straight minutes against the best defense in the league despite being a terrible player, Kings coach Dave Joerger offered this insight:

joerger

Over half of Jackson’s minutes came at the four, including a stretch in the 4th when the 6’8, 200 pound Jackson was guarding Derrick Favors, a 6’10, 260 pound beast.  But can you really blame Dave for that?  After all, we are in the era of Positionless Basketball©.  Hopefully Jackson’s next position will be on the bench.  At Discovery Park.  With the other bums.

The Spurs most important weapon doesn’t play road games

With his body as protection, Thunder guard Raymond Felton conservatively brought the ball up court with his right hand, using a path Spurs defender Patty Mills, who picked him up the full length, offered. Felton took another shuffle towards the sideline, but in an instant, changed course. The veteran pivoted towards center court and towards a screen set by forward Jerami Grant just outside the three point line. Felton hit the acceleration at just the right time, bursting around the pick and leaving stunned Mills fighting through the wall, and raced towards a softness in the defense. Felton reached the free throw line, rose up from one leg and released a gentle floater that nestled through the nylon for two. The home crowd groaned audibly. The scorekeeper booked two. The lead was now 43-20 in favor of visiting Oklahoma City, their largest of the night, with 9:30 to go in the first half. Continue reading “The Spurs most important weapon doesn’t play road games”