Mike Brown has always been recognized for his joyous spirit and enthusiasm, and his guidance helped lead some of the most memorable teams in recent years.
Coming into training camp and beginning his tenure as Head Coach of the Sacramento Kings, Brown provided a spirit that lit up a facility full of necessary insecurity and uncertainty amongst the press. The team dealt with their promising future superstar last February. Oh, and by the way, they have not seen the postseason in close to 20 years.
Brown’s remarks to the media were interrupted by a loud yell from a distance during the usual late-September competitive nature that he freshly initiates.
“Does that concern you?” A reporter asked. The newest Kings’ coach’s face was already giddy with excitement.
“No!” Brown responded with his beaming grin. “AAAHHHH! I love it!”
Well, that high-spirited beam that lit up the organization early on established one of the best, most-likable storylines on a nightly basis throughout the season. The Kings are on the brink of a new playoff era.
Light the beam. The Kings have had by far their most dominant season in nearly two decades, led by an unexpected, otherworldly offense. Just about all the boxes have been checked off without the roster having any sort of major experience. What is Sacramento’s outlook as the playoffs approach?
The Kings basically have all the offensive prowess and fit in order to contend for a Finals run. Their tandem of De’Aaron Fox and Domantas Sabonis are one of the highest-scoring duos. “The Fox and the Ox,” as some basketball nerds may have seen the nickname labeled are the first Sacramento All-Star pairing since Brad Miller and Peja Stojaković in 2003-04. Also, the first Kings All-Star in general since DeMarcus Cousins in 2016-17 when he was whispered to being notified of his move to New Orleans in the middle of talking to the media.
Both with the likelihood of All-NBA nods, they have been the backbone of the NBA’s most lights-out offense in notable fashion.
The team has the league’s seventh-best record since Dec. 1 at 34-21. The 11th-ranked Sacramento Kings all season have remained atop the league offensively, mostly by a margin with an offensive rating of 118.9. Sacramento is tied for the third-best assist ratio with the Phoenix Suns while being eighth in the NET. Imaginably, they are first in points per game at 121, which is 2.8 more than the second-most PPG team, the Golden State Warriors, at 118.2. The Kings are also first in true shooting percentage at 61.2%.
In their last 15, the team is tied with Philadelphia and Cleveland for the association’s third-best record at 10-5, with them remaining in the top three in points (122.1). At one point recently, with them atop everyone else, Sacramento had a nine-point differential between them and the second-place team in PPG.
On March 13, during their daily podcast, Bill Simmons and Ryen Russillo described some very eye-opening numbers within the offense that the Kings were putting up. Russillo stated how, in their last 15, they were four points better per 100 possessions than the No. 2 offense. Fox, who has been way above everyone else when it comes to clutch and fourth-quarter scoring. The 25-year-old has 20% more points than anyone else in the last five minutes, shooting at least 54%.
Simmons also said at the time how their clutch offensive rating on the season of 128.7 per 100 possessions is 11 points greater than the No. 2 team in Utah at 117 and the rest of the league.