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May 7, 2014; Oklahoma City, OK, USA; Oklahoma City Thunder guard Russell Westbrook (0) handles the ball against Los Angeles Clippers guard Darren Collison (2) during the fourth quarter in game two of the second round of the 2014 NBA Playoffs at Chesapeake Energy Arena. Mandatory Credit: Mark D. Smith-USA TODAY Sports

Report: Mike Malone confirms Darren Collison as Kings starter

Earlier today, in an interview with Sacramento’s local CBS Sports hub, Kings head coach Mike Malone confirmed Darren Collison as the starting point guard for the franchise going into the 2014-15 season when asked about potential position battles headed into training camp.

“DeMarcus Cousins is starting next year, we know that. Darren Collison is gonna start next year.”

The decision to sign Darren Collison instead of re-signing Isaiah Thomas–now a member of the Phoenix Suns–has been a huge talking point in regards to 2014′s free agency. Based on their pasts, Thomas has proved to be the better player, but the Kings opted for Collison because, in the words of Mike Malone, Collison has experienced the playoffs and brings that feeling and knowledge to the franchise.

Needless to say, all eyes will be on the Kings, Thomas, and Collison heading into next season.

Why the Kings? Because they made what looks to be an ill decision by opting for Collison over Thomas.

Why Collison? Because many don’t expect him to match what Thomas did for the Kings last season–the 60th overall pick averaged a career-high 20.3 points and 6.3 assists per game.

Why Thomas? Because, despite being in a reserve role–at least depending on what happens with Eric Bledsoe–whatever he does in Phoenix, fans and analysts will surely compare it to what Collison is doing in Sacramento. If he plays better, the Kings will be seen as failures. If he plays worse than Collison, the Kings decision will be justified.

Not often does Sacramento have a dominant story line, but all eyes will be on Collison come October.

Tags: Darren Collison Isaiah Thomas Mike Malone NBA NBA NEws Sacramento Kings

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