The Kings open training camp Saturday morning at their practice facility in the heart of Downtown Sacramento. It's a new season, and thus the team has high hopes and a slew of new faces.
Friday's media day kicked off the festivities, but the Kings will hit the ground running in short order. They'll have an abbreviated three days of training camp before boarding a 20-hour flight to play in a pair of preseason games in India. The Kings will then fly back to the States for a very quick preseason schedule leading up to the regular-season opener on Oct. 23.
Photo station is getting solid content today. pic.twitter.com/RyHoENrAoJ— James Ham (@James_HamNBCS) September 27, 2019
Coach Luke Walton will focus on setting a base defense and doing a lot of teaching over the weekend before the Kings break camp. They'll have plenty of time together to build team chemistry as they fly halfway around the world.
Here is a look at where the team stands entering training camp for the 2019-20 season.
Additions on the court ...
Cory Joseph, Trevor Ariza, Dewayne Dedmon, Richaun Holmes, Justin James, Kyle Guy, Tyler Lydon, Tyler Ulis, Eric Mika, Isaiah Pineiro
Kings general manager Vlade Divac aggressively rebuilt his roster, shelling out big money to Joseph, Ariza, Dedmon and Holmes.
Dedmon is expected to start at center while Joseph, Ariza and Holmes are fighting for rotational spots. The Kings drafted James and Guy in June, and both are expected to play major roles with the Kings' G League team in Stockton. Lydon signed a two-year, non-guaranteed deal and is fighting for a roster spot along with Ulis, who signed a one-year non-guaranteed contract earlier this week.
Mika and Pineiro signed Exhibit 10 contracts, and the Kings hope to use them in Stockton as well.
... And on the sideline
Sacramento shook things up over the offseason, resetting its coaching staff with only Bobby Jackson remaining from the former group.
Walton enters his first season as the Kings' head coach. He brought in Igor Kokoskov, Bob Beyers and Jesse Murmuys as his front-row assistants. Roy Rana will act as his chief of staff, while Stacey Augman and Lindsey Harding join Jackson as assistant/player development coaches. Rico Hines will also work as a player development coach, and Will Scott holds the dual title of player development coach and head video coordinator.
Willie Cauley-Stein, Kosta Koufos, Alec Burks, Corey Brewer, Frank Mason, B.J. Johnson, Troy Williams
Cauley-Stein entered last season wanting to "get paid." That didn't happen in Sacramento and he settled for a two-year, $4.5 million contract with the Warriors. Burks joined Golden State as well, inking a one-year, $1.6 million contract. K
oufos took his talents to Russia, Mason signed a two-way deal with the Milwaukee Bucks and Brewer, Johnson and Williams are all unsigned at this time.
Battle to Watch
Harry Giles vs. Richaun Holmes
Giles played 58 games for the Kings last season in his rookie year and has a ton of potential. Holmes joined the squad over the summer on a two-year, $10 million deal. They'll battle it out for who gets to share minutes with Dedmon at center.
Both Giles and Holmes are extremely athletic and play a physical style. Giles is a high-post big with incredible instincts, while Holmes is a force rolling to the basket. It should be a spirited competition.
Player on the Rise
Marvin Bagley posted big numbers in his rookie season and made the NBA's All-Rookie first team. He's likely getting a promotion this season from the second team to the starting lineup as the Kings move to capitalize on his tremendous potential.
Player on the Mend
For the first time in a while, the Kings walk into camp completely healthy. They'll keep a close eye on Bogdan Bogdanovic, Nemanja Bjelica, Cory Joseph and Harrison Barnes, who all spent time with their respective countries at the FIBA World Cup earlier this month.
Which way to the gym?
The Kings players all appeared to be in great shape walking into camp.
Caleb Swanigan, who has battled weight issues in the past, looked extremely trim. Two-way player Wenyen Gabriel bulked up his upper body, weighing in at 220, which is 12 pounds heavier than his playing weight last season. Even De'Aaron Fox managed to add weight, coming into camp at a rock solid 186 pounds.
Sacramento is going to push the tempo, which will melt some of these pounds away, but it's good for the players to come into camp in good shape and then try to maintain it.
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Hungry for a Chance
Sacramento has a collection of young players who enter camp with hopes of making the final cut. Of the group, Gabriel is the one who might have the best shot of standing out. The Kings are heavy at the forward position, which might force the 22-year-old to spend another season in Stockton, but there is a buzz around the former Kentucky Wildcat.