In a previous edition of this project, I suggested that the Bulls being terrible was a definitive sign that the universe was ordered. The reality-bending that Michael Jordan did has had karmic consequences, the team is fated to fail, it’s just the way of things in a rational existence.
I found a lot of comfort in this.
But here we are, one day later, and the unnerving truth has been exposed.
In the Sacramento Kings, and their never-ending failures large and small, we see that the universe is not ordered, comforting, anything like that. The universe is chaos, suffering, insanity, randomness. No one gets what they deserve, no one is entitled to even the smallest bit of comfort or optimism in this hideous world. Chaos Reigns.
Think about the history: they’re been terrible, year after year, manifestation after manifestation. The one time they weren’t terrible, they were the victims of a Laker hailstorm, a botched ref job for the ages, or a shady conspiracy, depending on who you ask. In the ruins of that nightmare, they draft and employ the most skilled post-up big man of his generation, riiiiiight as that particular skill is becoming obsolete. Their owners’ finances fall apart. They sell, small-market Sacramento manages to keep the team, and whoops, the new owner is also uh, suboptimal but in the other way.
Malfeasance after malfeasance, weird draft pick after weird draft pick. Even the ones that should have worked just absolutely do not. Think about Tyreke Evans. Really think about him: big, skilled point guard, just needed a nudge into the world of order, control, discipline, all that nonsense. But he got drafted by the Kings. They simply drown everyone they associate with, cast them off to a padded room.
This year’s squad is weird even for that. Willie Cauley-Stein is a pole covered in tattoos, who might play defense well but is mostly a set of skills that just can’t seem to hang together. Bogdan Bogdanovic plays muted Euro-ball, a complete product who still casts a pall of mystery over everything he does. Buddy Hield, Skal, Ben McLemore, all dudes whose production wavers or doesn’t come at all, packages of talent and physical presence who could very well just not know how to play basketball, for all anyone can tell.
Thrown into this pit of madness is Marvin Bagley Jr, who is, to be eight thousand percent clear, a raw, skilled big man, the hardest kind of payer to develop. He will be dealing with being drafted before a dude who very well might be a generational European talent who could make the pick look stupid without even giving Bagley much of a say in the matter. His allies in this effort? Oh, The Sacramento Kings? You know, the insane club who fail all the time?
There is one fixed quantity on the entire roster: it is Kosta Koufus. Expect his sense to be removed from him this year, as he begins etching the MonaLisa into his arm with a razor blade on the sidelines, trying to make a masterpiece from the pain, just to be in control of something.
Here is how chaotic the Kings are: they looked at their team of insane young people and decided, wisely, that perhaps some veteran leadership was in order. Unfortunately, no one wanted to sign up. Vince Carter even left, for Christ’s sake. Adults with families try to avoid chaos at work, for the most part. But there was one washed veteran who could find it in his heart to be the man the Kings need to patrol the locker room. It is Z-Bo. Z-Bo! Even their stabs at making order are marked with the chaos of one of the NBA’s most notably insane careers. Expect them to win six games with like a +3 point-differential.