Marvin Bagley III’s injury a setback for Sacramento Kings playoff hopes

Copyright 2019 NBAE (Photo by Michael Gonzales/NBAE via Getty Images)
Copyright 2019 NBAE (Photo by Michael Gonzales/NBAE via Getty Images) /

The Sacramento Kings will be without their young forward Marvin Bagley III following a thumb injury. During their 0-4 start, his presence is sorely missed.

The Sacramento Kings have not started the way people had envisioned following a successful offseason. Having lost all of their opening four games you could be forgiven for writing them off as potential playoff candidates.

Currently without the services of Marvin Bagley III, the Kings are missing the versatility he provides when on the court. Interestingly they Kings have not plugged another player into the rotation, instead opting to roll with a nine-man rotation.

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Having spent 54 percent of his young NBA career at the center position, the Kings could really use him right now. Dewayne Dedmon is struggling out of the gate, playing uncharacteristically poorly. So poorly in fact, he is facing losing his starting spot on the team.

Bagley shot 31.3 percent from deep last year, providing the spacing required for players such as De’Aaron Fox room to probe the defense on half-court sets. Considering the Kings are currently playing a slower brand of basketball than last year, having a floor-spacing big would be a godsend.

Furthermore, while the Kings have been a good offensive rebounding team to start the year, they have struggled on the defensive glass. Considering Bagley averaged 7.6 rebounds last year, with five of those on the defensive end, they could really use him back on the court.

Obviously, the Kings current struggles do not rest on the back of Bagley sustaining this injury, there seems to be more issues which need to ironed out.

Harry Giles is another member of the team who is currently on the injury list, further removing more size from the team’s rotation. Missing two of your best big men will undoubtedly negate the threat you pose on the interior on both ends of the floor.

The silver lining here is the emergence of Richaun Holmes as an option off the bench. On Monday against the Denver Nuggets, Holmes came off the bench to provide a spark with 24 points on 10-of-14 shooting.

Holmes is lightening the burden on the remaining healthy big men with his current displays. He is also staking a claim to retain some of the extra minutes he is seeing in the absence of Bagley and Giles.

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This team entered the season having added veteran leadership to the young core they have in place. While they have had a poor start to the season there are still 78 games left to play.

Should Bagley and Giles both return to the rotation on their current timelines, there will be plenty of time to right the ship. They may be in choppy waters right now, but storms pass sooner or later.

Will everyone currently on the ship survive the storm? That’s a question that remains to be seen. After four games against stern opposition, it becomes easy to let your heads drop. Injecting the youthful presence of both Bagley and Giles should go some way to improving the team’s fortunes.

Make no mistake though, the Kings are a breakneck-paced team. Continuing to try and attack in the half-court, they will struggle, especially without the likes of Bagley to stretch the opposition.

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Bagley getting hurt has most definitely hindered the team’s chances of early success, but their long-term trajectory remains the same.