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Sacramento Kings have a players-only meeting after latest home loss

By Zach Harper | NBA writer
Even despite the latest stretching exercises, the Kings can't get it together. (Getty Images)

The Sacramento Kings are in a bad place in so many ways.

The owners have turned their backs on the city of Sacramento, backing out on a handshake agreement for a new downtown arena after celebrating it during a game late last season. The management of the team has gone from a powerhouse a decade ago to acquiring high lottery picks that don't fit together.

And since the team let Rick Adelman go in 2006, it's had five coaches with a combined record of 161-324 (33 percent winning percentage) and zero playoff appearances. After dropping their latest home game to the Atlanta Hawks on Friday night, the veteran players have had enough and called a players-only meeting before talking to the media. James Ham of CowbellKingdom.com has the details:

After another embarrassing loss in front of their home crowd, the Sacramento Kings are beginning to show major cracks. Just nine games into the 2012-13 season, veterans Chuck Hayes and Francisco Garcia called a players-only meeting last night while media members waited anxiously outside their locker room door.

“Very frustrated,” Hayes told Cowbell Kingdom following the loss to Atlanta. “We came in with a good mindset, but things are going bad right now and we're starting to break and we can't have that.”

The Kings lost by double digits to the Hawks (112-96) at home, which was their third straight home loss by 11 points or more. It was also their fourth straight loss overall, and all of those have been double-digit margins. The Kings have the league's 28th-best offense, 24th-best defense and the worst net rating and scoring differentials.

They've had to deal with their rookie Thomas Robinson getting suspended for an elbow to the throat of Jonas Jerebko in a home victory over the Detroit Pistons, and DeMarcus Cousinsgetting suspended for a hostile altercation with Spurs announcer Sean Elliott.

King's big man Chuck Hayes seems to be done with the excuses about this being a young team.

“You know, you can only say the word young for so long,” said a fiery Hayes. “You know, you're young if you only have 40 games in your career. You're young if you only have 80. Soon as you crack into your second, third, fourth year, fifth year, you know, you're not young anymore.

“You've done seen every play call,” he continued. “You've been to every arena. You've done guarded by most of the players in the league at your position. The word young shouldn't be thrown around no more. We've got to start taking accountability.”

This was once a proud franchise with a rabid fan base and too much talent to keep on the roster. Now they have talented young players who don't know how to play together or work within whatever system their latest coach has tried to implement. The Kings have been run into the ground because there doesn't seem to be a direction with any aspect of the organization.

Eventually, it seems like the Maloofs will either get their assumed wish of making the situation in Sacramento so bad that there isn't enough support and they get to relocate to a bigger market, or they will have to sell the team to an ownership group that wants to keep them in Sacramento and run them in a competent manner.

Regardless, the fans are growing tired of the nonsense. They've done everything asked of them to prove they should keep the team in Sacramento, been rebuffed without clear reasons and are being force-fed this NBA atrocity that is put before them on the court.

Maybe the veterans can get the young players back on the right track after Friday night's discussion.

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