Carl Landry, who was traded last season from Houston to Sacramento, knows a deal could be coming by next Thursday since a lot of teams have interest in his talent and reasonable cap hit of $3 million. Landry would prefer to stay in Sacramento, however, he is prepared for anything. "It's a date on everybody's calendar where it's pretty much circled," Landry told The Sacramento Bee. "Everybody wants to be a part of this team right now; everybody wants to win. And you just never know." Landry has not talked to the Kings about a potential trade, but his agent Aaron Smith, has on a few occasions. "It is what it is," Landry said. "If I'm here, I'm here. If I'm not, I'm not. My dream was always to play in the NBA and never for the Kings or the Bulls or the New York Knicks. Hopefully I'm here. If not, I've got to keep working." Landry, who is set to become a free agent on July 1, is a solid backup and any team looking to strengthen their bench at power forward will probably call the Kings and make an offer for him. -- Nick Borges
David Thorpe As we head into the All-Star break, it seems an appropriate time to take a step back and evaluate the new talent that has entered the league in the past two seasons. No one can deny that each class, taken on its own merits, has been short on top-tier talent. But what about when we look at them combined? When we consider that no fewer than nine different players are considered the likely faces of their team's future and another five play either pivotal or starting roles for playoff teams, we begin to see that the NBA has added plenty of strong players the last two summers. Let's stack them up and rank them, not based on future performances or what they did last year, but strictly on how they have done so far this season. 1. Blake Griffin 2. Steph Curry 3. Dejuan Blair 4. Serge Ibaka 5. Jrue Holliday 6. Darren Collison 7. Ty Lawson 8. Wesley Matthews 9. John Wall 10. DeMarcus Cousins, Kings He still has a lot of growing up to do, but he's the biggest beast of these two classes after Griffin. Try these numbers on for size: He averaged 21.7 ppg and 11.5 rpg in a recent string of games against the Lakers, Celtics, Jazz, Mavs, Hornets and Thunder. That's a lot of lottery picks and All-Stars he battled against. And he made 50 of his 101 shots in that stretch, too. 11. Tyreke Evans, Kings Evans has been on a tear lately, but there is no way to ignore his horrible start and his inability to help the Kings win. The Kings are 24-78 since Jan. 1, 2010, and only Cleveland's Mo Williams has a usage rate of 25 or more and has lost more games than Evans this season. Evans still scores in bunches and he's a much improved defender, but among starting point guards he ranks in the bottom five in true shooting percentage and is dead last in assist rate. His talent is undeniable, but he hasn't figured out how to use it within a team concept yet. 12. Demar Derozan 13. Landry Fields 14. Greg Monroe 15. James Harden 16. Taj Gibson 17. Gary Neal 18. Brandon Jennings 19. Reggie Wiliams 20. Paul George
According to Jason Jones of the Sacramento Bee, Hassan Whiteside's left knee -- which has been an issue for him this season -- has a tear of the left patellar tendon. As such, he's set to miss two weeks, and will then be re-evaluated. Whiteside has only appeared in one game so far this season -- the team's opener -- so his injury should have little to no effect on the Kings' frontcourt rotation. -- Ryan Corazza
It's been long buzzed about that if Las Vegas gets a new stadium capable of housing an NBA squad, it's possible a team could eventually set up shop in Sin City. Las Vegas currently has a proposed 40,000-seat stadium on UNLV's campus in the works that could be used for an NBA squad as well. "It's way too early to get into any of that," said Silverton president Craig Cavileer, one company that is involved in bringing the stadium to UNLV, according to the Las Vegas Review-Journal. "This project is not contingent on having professional sports. However, when it gets built, it will be ready for that and to add another layer to go with UNLV sports and other events." Steve Kyler of HOOPSWORLD added this to fray Wednesday. "With a venue of that size there is little doubt that developers have eyes on bigger fish such as the NHL or the NBA," he wrote. "League sources have long maintained there are a lot of hurdles to overcome before Vegas would be considered a viable relocation options ... The NBA has said Vegas is not an option until they have a state-of-the-art venue, and at least [Wednesday] it sounds like one is coming, so it seems almost inevitable we'll have to have the Vegas discussion again in the coming year." So it seems until the stadium is actually a reality and possible discussions with professional teams are held, such chatter about a team landing in Vegas will remain largely speculation for now. -- Ryan Corazza
We've previously rounded up chatter for possible Samuel Dalembert destinations, as it's been rumored he could be on the move by the trade deadline. And as ESPN's Marc Stein reported in the Weekend Dime, the Kings are still open to moving the center, but it comes with some caveats. Stein explains:"The Kings, sources say, are open to moving big man Dalembert during the next 27 days before the deadline, but they remain unwilling to take back anything other than expiring contracts to preserve maximum flexibility on the other side of a new collective bargaining agreement ... unless someone wants to donate a star. With Dalembert possessing an expiring contract valued at $13.4 million, it's not easy to find a match that keeps the Kings in the same cap position as they are now." I for one would love to re-sign Dally next year for the right price, unless a trade comes through that will improve us significantly. I like his game a lot, and he seems to mesh well with all our bigs not named JT.
Yao Ming is an all-star starter again! No surprise why he is an all-star, but still is pretty funny. He is now an 8 time all-star, despite only playing more then 70 games four times. The steroid era made HR numbers forever skewed and in some cases asterisks placed by numbers. I wonder if Yao's all-star appearances will set a similar precedent when it comes to looking at how great players careers were, with all-star appearances being one of the bigger things on their resumes.
Summary: "Either the team is moving or DeMarcus Cousins is having maturity issues or jobs on the coaching staff and the front office are reported to be in jeopardy or Evans is regressing for any number of possible reasons. What a mess of a first half. Just when it appeared the Kings were finally gaining some traction, with Evans coming off his Rookie of the Year and a tangible commitment to defense, they are back to challenging for the worst record in the league. That's bad enough. The timing makes it worse. They need to be rallying people in the city, in hopes of finally beating long (impossible?) odds to get a new arena, not igniting more frustration." --Scott Howard-Cooper
Cousins has been nearly unstoppable lately, and the Kings are finding success when they cener their offense around him. Against the Suns on Sunday, Cousins scored 13 of his career-high 28 points in the fourth quarter to help Sacramento rally from a 14-point deficit for the 94-89 win. On Tuesday, he nearly led the Kings back from another deficit, scoring 24 points with seven rebounds, and forced Larry Drew to bring his starters back to close out the game. In his last four games, Cousins is aveaging 22.3 points and 9.8 rebounds. "He wants to win," teammate Omri Casspi said. "That's it. He just wants to win. He is competitive; he's a great guy and a great teammate. He wants to win so bad."
Evans overtakes Griffin's dunk on Timofey, for top play of the season.
An interesting stat for those guys at the end of the bench.
We mentioned earlier this week that Rich Harden has drawn interest from a handful of clubs this offseason, including the Seattle Mariners, Colorado Rockies, Minnesota Twins, Arizona Diamondbacks, Tampa Bay Rays, Milwaukee Brewers and the New York Yankees. Harden spent his first six big league season in Oakland and Susan Slusser of the San Francisco Chronicle reports Wednesday that the right-hander is a bullpen target of the Athletics. Harden, according to Jon Morosi, is being viewed by several clubs as a relief option, however, and Troy Renck of the Denver Post tweets that the Rockies are one of those teams. Pitching in relief may assist the right-hander in staying healthier than he has the past several years, but it would certainly cut into his potential earnings with such a role change. Harden could view it as a one-year avenue to reestablish his value. The 29-year-old has had arm problems that have cut into his velocity the past three years. He once sat in the 93-95 mph range with his fastball and averaged about 90 mph with the Rangers last season. Harden is from British Columbia and a season spent in a pitcher's park could pique his interest, making Seattle a viable option. The Mariners, who have a need for starting pitching, were in on Harden last winter before he took Texas' best offer. - Jason A. Churchill
Power forward Carl Landry is set to become an unrestricted free agent in July and he told the Houston Chronicle on Tuesday that he'd consider re-signing with the Rockets. "The fans here were great to me," Landry said. "I had great support. This is a place I enjoyed. I'd consider it, definitely, but that's so far away I haven't thought about that yet. I'd consider every team. It was my dream to play in the NBA, not for a certain team." Landry played for Houston from 2007 though February of last season before he was traded to Sacramento. -- Nick Borges
Pick No. 1: John Wall to the Wizards Hmmm, would the Wiz take a point guard who shows competitive fire, Formula 1 speed, a willingness to defend and the charisma of a star? Of course they would. A better debate about Wall: Where would he go in a draft with Derrick Rose and Blake Griffin? I'd guess 50 percent of the GMs would take Wall first. That's how special he can be. While Rose is a dynamic scorer and Griffin is a beast all over the court, Wall can be both a great scorer and a more natural lead guard than Rose, while also being an upgrade on defense. And it seems the league values guys like him more than anyone else besides star quality centers. Favors Pick No. 2: Derrick Favors to the 76ers This looks like as much of a no-brainer as the No. 1 selection. With the Nets, Favors has shown tremendous promise as a rebounder and scorer in the paint and would have gotten plenty of minutes in Philly's rotation. Which looks like a better foundation to build on: Jrue Holiday and Evan Turner as a backcourt duo or Holiday and Favors as a pick-and-roll combo? Holiday and Favors are two of the youngest players in the league, and both possess a demeanor that suggests they are very serious pros. Cousins Pick No. 3: DeMarcus Cousins to the Nets New Jersey would be a perfect spot for Cousins, if Favors weren't available. Tough-minded coach with lots of credibility. A culture of rules and discipline (see Terrence Williams and the D-League). And a franchise center already in place. There wouldn't be any gargantuan banners of him hanging off buildings, as we've seen in Sacramento. And my guess is that in Jersey, we would have seen a slimmer Cousins, who'd have had to work each day just to survive matchups with Brook Lopez and Avery Johnson's expectations. Aminu Pick No. 4: Al-Farouq Aminu to the Timberwolves Who knew Aminu would make more than half of his 45 3-pointers in his first 20 games as a pro? And at just 20 years of age (a full three years younger than Wes Johnson), his upside is huge. He would have been a great fit on the Wolves, an improving team that could really use perimeter shooting. With the way Kevin Love rebounds, the Wolves would have been able to play Aminu some at the 4 with little fear of getting killed on the glass (before he builds enough strength to hold his own). Eventually, Aminu should be able to learn to do some real damage from that spot. Bledsoe Pick No. 5: Eric Bledsoe to the Kings Sacramento has the second-worst record in the league for the year 2010, with just 15 wins since Jan. 1, never winning more than four games in a month. The Kings epitomize rebuilding, a mode they've been in for years. (They got good value with Cousins, but in this exercise, he's off the board.) Now it looks as though the team realizes that the reigning rookie of the year, Tyreke Evans, is better off playing next to a true point guard. And Bledsoe has shown the ability to play that part well this season in his stints as a starter with the Clippers. With his explosive athleticism, he would have given the Kings a very young, very interesting backcourt going forward. Sanders Pick No. 6: Larry Sanders to the Warriors An athletic big man has been a need in Golden State for a while, and Sanders would have fit the bill beautifully. He especially would have been an upgrade on defense, as scoring is a luxury that this team does not necessarily need. His eight blocked shots in Denver gave us a glimpse of the paint presence he can be. And he could have developed nicely next to David Lee. Davis Pick No. 7: Ed Davis to the Pistons He's been back for only a few games this season, but based on what he did in summer league and this past week, Davis would have been able to become a high productivity guy in Detroit. He's a better rebounder than he seems and he's a finisher who knows how to get off good shots. Detroit would be a better interior team with Davis. Fields Pick No. 8: Landry Fields to the Clippers If Aminu hadn't been available, Fields would have been a fantastic left-field pick. It's hard to pinpoint exactly what position Landry Fields is best suited for in the NBA, but it's easy to say he's an excellent wing player who would have fit beautifully next to Eric Gordon. Fields is one of the top rebounders of this class, and his feel for the game also would work well with a beastly scorer like Blake Griffin, who demands extra attention from defenders. Fields can slash and pass -- both necessities when dealing with rotating defenses -- and his shot looks like it will be solid, too. Johnson Pick No. 9: Wes Johnson to the Jazz For an offense that loves to invert its players, wings who can post up thrive (point guards, too). Johnson has a penchant for jacking up jumpers, which is not good, but in Utah he would have been forced to spend lots of time in the paint, which would be good. Given his athleticism, think Ronnie Brewer with a better jumper. Johnson's maturity would have helped him blend in well with the atmosphere in Utah, and his temperament would have helped him deal with Jerry Sloan's rough side. This is perhaps my favorite fit of the top 10. Henry Pick No. 10: Xavier Henry to the Pacers Wanted: A multitalented guard with a predisposition to defend. Also must have a high ceiling to grow with this up-and-coming team. Xavier Henry, come on down! Impressively, Henry is currently finding ways in Memphis to contribute beyond his shooting stroke, which was considered his strength this summer but is not there yet. He takes pride in his defense and plays with a nice tempo, similar to James Harden as a rookie. He can become an excellent shooter and has the look of a player who will learn to hurt defenders in the post.
Via ESPN Insider Carl Landry is on an expiring contract this season in Sacramento and has been recently dropped from the starting lineup into a sixth-man role. And Jimmy Spencer of NBA.com is hearing he's one player who's name has come up as a possible trade chip. "Landry doesn't fit into the team's long-term goals," he tweeted. "It's not as much that I think Landry will get traded as much as I've heard he's been the name talked about. Plus, how much would the Kings pay to keep Landry around next year anyways?" For his production, Landry's $3 million salary this season is pretty tame. There's been some chatter the Rockets are interested in re-acquiring him. But if they feel confident about landing him in free agency, it's conceivable they could wait until the summer to acquire him instead of giving up an asset or two for him at the trade deadline. -- Ryan Corazza
Well their goes that option.
How their shooting forms stack up against each other.
I was thinking about the King's moving forward and what moves the Kings will need to make to contend again. Tyreke and Beno together in the back-court has been awesome offensively every time they...
I was thinking about the draft and how most people seem to want to follow the Blazers and Thunder and build through the draft. I think this is going to be a really good draft, with the potential...
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