Still defending Vlade? (split from game thread)

Is it time to fire Vlade?


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Did you want the Kings to trade Fox for Porzingis at the time? That's not a trade that 90% of Kings fans would have made at the time so I'm not really a big fan of revisionist history when it comes to things like that.
I still don't believe many KINGS fans would want to make that trade today. I know I wouldn't. It's not Fox's fault the org botched the 2018 draft. And numerous others. They only got one draft right, and that was his draft. One player can't win a thing.

Despite all the dysfunction in the front office and personnel mistakes, Fox is performing well on the whole this season and showing that he's becoming a better player at only 22 years old. There's still much reason to believe that if he's surrounded by good talent that actually isn't on the IR every other week, he can be a major foundational piece.

Porzinigis is a good player, but is a couple years older with a concerning injury history. No chance I'd make that trade then or now.

Kind of like wanting to draft Mitchell with the 10th pick. Only Blob and a couple other posters on this site can really say that because they were calling for him before the draft. The rest of us didn't want to draft a combo guard who was semi redundant to what we thought would be our two best players in Fox and Hield. I certainly wish Vlade would have drafted Mitchell but I can't really complain about it since I wouldn't have drafted him myself at the time.
It's easy to see how Mitchell is doing in Utah and just expect he have done the same thing in SAC. Doesn't work like that.

As I've said many times, much of player success has to do with situation and fit. As far as we know, Mitchell wouldn't be winning in SAC right now either. Because of all the draft and FA misses and other happenings. He wouldn't be playing in Utah's system with Rudy Gobert and others.

You swap Fox or Buddy with Mitchell and their stories become drastically different. Mitchell would be losing here, Fox or Buddy would be winning there, even if not at the exact same level. Because the franchises are currently in and have been in different places.

And I recognize that the above doesn't apply to all players. Every player and situation is unique. But unlike a player like, say, Devin Booker, Fox and Buddy have been players than can kinda fit in anywhere. Because they don't dominate the ball or jack up 25 shots every game.

Mitchell would be piling up nice stats here in SAC but would be suffering the same team fate as DeMarcus Cousins and now Swipa.

Now Swipa and Mitchell together? Perhaps that'd be a bit different. Who knows.

And if those two were both drafted w/o trading Cousins (which was still possible because you never know how the lottery would have went) then the KINGS might have really had something.
 
I still don't believe many KINGS fans would want to make that trade today. I know I wouldn't. It's not Fox's fault the org botched the 2018 draft. And numerous others. They only got one draft right, and that was his draft. One player can't win a thing.

Despite all the dysfunction in the front office and personnel mistakes, Fox is performing well on the whole this season and showing that he's becoming a better player at only 22 years old. There's still much reason to believe that if he's surrounded by good talent that actually isn't on the IR every other week, he can be a major foundational piece.

Porzinigis is a good player, but is a couple years older with a concerning injury history. No chance I'd make that trade then or now.



It's easy to see how Mitchell is doing in Utah and just expect he have done the same thing in SAC. Doesn't work like that.

As I've said many times, much of player success has to do with situation and fit. As far as we know, Mitchell wouldn't be winning in SAC right now either. Because of all the draft and FA misses and other happenings. He wouldn't be playing in Utah's system with Rudy Gobert and others.

You swap Fox or Buddy with Mitchell and their stories become drastically different. Mitchell would be losing here, Fox or Buddy would be winning there, even if not at the exact same level. Because the franchises are currently in and have been in different places.

And I recognize that the above doesn't apply to all players. Every player and situation is unique. But unlike a player like, say, Devin Booker, Fox and Buddy have been players than can kinda fit in anywhere. Because they don't dominate the ball or jack up 25 shots every game.

Mitchell would be piling up nice stats here in SAC but would be suffering the same team fate as DeMarcus Cousins and now Swipa.
Remember we're talking about Mitchell with the 10th pick so it would be Fox, Buddy and Mitchell all together. No JJ, Giles or Barnes.

There's no guarantee of anything but I'm sure you'd be hard pressed to find many people that wouldn't take Mitchell over Giles and Barnes right now.
 
Remember we're talking about Mitchell with the 10th pick so it would be Fox, Buddy and Mitchell all together. No JJ, Giles or Barnes.

There's no guarantee of anything but I'm sure you'd be hard pressed to find many people that wouldn't take Mitchell over Giles and Barnes right now.
Right. I get that.

At first, I was speaking from the aspect of just swapping the players as the situations are today.

But, you're right, they could have taken Mitchell and doubled down with that 10th pick. What a haul that would have been for the Cousins trade, huh? Buddy, Swipa and Mitchell. Wow.

They also could have taken Bam Adebayo. Wish they'd have been smarter than me and saw him developing into the player he's become now.

Funny thing about that 2017 draft is that more impactful players were drafted 13-30 than from the top 12.

Just goes to show that you never know.
 
After ruminating further on the Athletic article and some of the subsequent radio/podcast hits from local media, particularly Amick on The Drive and Kreidler on his podcast, I just think the problem is ownership. Look around the league, and these organizational problems all start at the top. The Rockets were stable for years; they never tanked and never made a panic trade. Morey was given license to do what he felt best. Now, he's working for Fertitta and all of a sudden he's tossing around 1st round picks like party favors so that he can land a massive albatross contract in Westbrook. Then he jettisons Cappella because "centers aren't valuable". I guess to keep Harden happy...anyway. Also, Houston is fair weather towards the Rockets and Fertitta allegedly has liquidity issues. I guess we can connect the dots.

This latest leak from the organization to the Athletic clearly seems to be coming from Vivek. The article has three main points: Vivek is giving Luke super-insightful tips on how to coach in the NBA via group text, Vivek approved the drafting of Luka at #2, and Buddy would like to start. The third point falls in the "well, duh" category, so set that aside. The fact that Vivek wants us to know he is giving coaching pointers to Luke is embarrassing for Vivek. How many times has this guy pretended he knew more about basketball than his coaches, in public, and been embarrassed on a national level for it? And yet, here we are again. Luke is a fine coach, but that's somewhat besides the point. The point is, at the NBA level, coaches are pretty fungible. If 3 or 4 solid-to-very good veteran NBA coaches cannot make your roster win, then guess what? It's not the coaching. If you think an NBA coach needs to better motivate the players, then guess what? You have the wrong players. And any mythologized figure from Pop to Riley would tell you the same. You want to create the right environment for motivated players, but you cannot manufacture championship level, or even playoff level, motivation out of whole cloth.

So, on to roster construction, and Vivek's conceit that he approved Luka. Maybe, but I don't really buy it. Why? Because Bagley over Luka has all the hallmarks of a Vivek decision. Does it involve "zagging while everyone else zigs"? Yes. Does it include a baffling degree of over-thinking while simultaneously completely lacking foresight? Yes. But, I just cannot believe that a man who saw the game the way Vlade did would pass on Luka in a vacuum. Maybe Fox complicated things, but drafting Luka and trading Fox is an owner's decision, ultimately. And Vivek clearly said no. What else was the dinner for than if not to decide if they wanted to make Luka the face of the franchise? Are we handing the keys to Luka, or sticking with Fox? That's Vivek's choice. (Spare me the naive, "bUt ThEy COulD pLaY tOGeTHer")

Much has been made about Vlade's lack of experience as a GM, but where did he have experience? Real Madrid and Serbia's Olympic committee. It's not hard to draw parallels between these entities and our fractured ownership situation. Vlade's job was to play peacemaker and attempt to unite the disparate groups behind Vivek's vision. Vlade's done OK at that, but I fear his time in that role is nearly up. I think this article is an opening salvo towards an eventual separation in April. Why do I fear it? Because Vlade is not the problem. The problem is the owner with the controlling interest. And if Vlade is gone, we'll be lucky to land a decent GM. The clock will reset. We'll gloomily/gleefully wait till April 2021 for Luke to be fired. Maybe we'll even Process...that will be fun. But it won't result in winning. When Cuban made a terrible call and overrode Donnie's desire to draft Giannis, Cuban owned it. He was totally forthright. The next time Donnie set his sights on a generational talent, they moved decisively. When the Kings owner makes a bad decision, he blames his staff. We're the Knicks of the West.
 
Remember we're talking about Mitchell with the 10th pick so it would be Fox, Buddy and Mitchell all together. No JJ, Giles or Barnes.

There's no guarantee of anything but I'm sure you'd be hard pressed to find many people that wouldn't take Mitchell over Giles and Barnes right now.
yeah, trading down that 2017 10th pick gets me more worked up than what happened in 2018. I was torn between Zach Collins and Mitchell but now enter Bam who went 14.
 
I believe Bagley was 100% Vlade. And if Vivek had stepped in, it would have been the one time in the history of this franchise when a meddling owner would have been celebrated from every single rooftop of Sacramento.
I remember hearing the tweet rumors about how Vivek wanted Luka but Vlade and Co (curse you, Williams! Curse you to hell!) were all about Bagley and his much vaunted second jump.

I've always been a hard line anti-Vivek guy, but I was crossing all my fingers and toes, hoping he'd meddle.
 
I don’t buy it. If Vivek wanted Luka, we would have Luka. Luka left that dinner thinking the Kings were drafting him. Who gave him that impression—the same Vlade that allegedly wanted a big? Or Vivek? Both? Most likely, Vivek did want to draft him but got cold feet about trading Fox.

A decision the magnitude of the 2018 draft, Vlade’s job is to present options, and it’s the owner’s choice which path to take. Vlade can advocate his position, but the ultimate decision rests with the owner. This is face of the franchise stuff, not trading down from #10 or other such moves. Now he’s publicly blaming Vlade for all of it. Sounds like a great guy to work for. I’m sure veteran GMs will be lobbying hard to get this gig in April....
 
I don’t buy it. If Vivek wanted Luka, we would have Luka. Luka left that dinner thinking the Kings were drafting him. Who gave him that impression—the same Vlade that allegedly wanted a big? Or Vivek? Both? Most likely, Vivek did want to draft him but got cold feet about trading Fox.

A decision the magnitude of the 2018 draft, Vlade’s job is to present options, and it’s the owner’s choice which path to take. Vlade can advocate his position, but the ultimate decision rests with the owner. This is face of the franchise stuff, not trading down from #10 or other such moves. Now he’s publicly blaming Vlade for all of it. Sounds like a great guy to work for. I’m sure veteran GMs will be lobbying hard to get this gig in April....
I don’t buy it either. Vivek’s first year in Sac‘s draft room and there he is on tape with PDA saying Nik over and over. Later when Nik looked like a waste he throws PDA under the bus saying he actually wanted Payton and Nik was PDA’s idea.
No love for PDA here but if this article, which I can’t open, suggests that Vivek is going on about how he wanted Luka all along and Bagley is all Vlades doing... well that seems like a messed up trend to me.
Personally at the time I was fine with the Bagley pick even though I voted Luka on this boards vote. I figured Vlade had more knowledge of Luka than I should have given him credit for.
 

VF21

#KingsFansForever
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I don’t buy it either. Vivek’s first year in Sac‘s draft room and there he is on tape with PDA saying Nik over and over. Later when Nik looked like a waste he throws PDA under the bus saying he actually wanted Payton and Nik was PDA’s idea.
No love for PDA here but if this article, which I can’t open, suggests that Vivek is going on about how he wanted Luka all along and Bagley is all Vlades doing... well that seems like a messed up trend to me.
Personally at the time I was fine with the Bagley pick even though I voted Luka on this boards vote. I figured Vlade had more knowledge of Luka than I should have given him credit for.
Nope. Here (in part) is what it says:

Ranadive, sources say, ramped up his interest in learning all about his team’s scouting process earlier this season and sought more insight about their collective network, with the belief that it was a reaction to previous draft events and the looming questions about why Doncic wasn’t selected.
 
My take is Luka would have been an ideal Vivek pick but he stepped back and let Vlade do his thing and, for a while prior to that, had taken a step back given all the heat he received for meddling.

Bringing up Vivek's first few years as evidence of what he did in 2018 can be taken one of two ways. One, because he meddled early on, he has continued meddling all along. Or two, because he meddled early on and received national blowback for it, he learned a lesson and took a more hands off approach.

Vlade's tenure strongly suggests the latter.

FWIW if Vivek picked Luka, I don't think that would have been a good thing. Sure the result would have been good but the process highly questionable. Why? It's the GM's and scouting department's job to get that right and two, I have zero confidence in Vivek's basketball acumen and his reasoning for wanting Luka is likely quite different than someone who really gets the game. He's an excitable techie. Now when Donnie Nelson says we have to get this kid or else....that's an opinion with some weight. Same as Petrie on his way out saying, get this Giannis kid. Those are guys who have lived and breathed this game for decades.

Vivek's responsibility is hiring experts to make the right decisions, not to make the decisions himself as a non expert.
 

Kingster

Hall of Famer
My take is Luka would have been an ideal Vivek pick but he stepped back and let Vlade do his thing and, for a while prior to that, had taken a step back given all the heat he received for meddling.

Bringing up Vivek's first few years as evidence of what he did in 2018 can be taken one of two ways. One, because he meddled early on, he has continued meddling all along. Or two, because he meddled early on and received national blowback for it, he learned a lesson and took a more hands off approach.

Vlade's tenure strongly suggests the latter.

FWIW if Vivek picked Luka, I don't think that would have been a good thing. Sure the result would have been good but the process highly questionable. Why? It's the GM's and scouting department's job to get that right and two, I have zero confidence in Vivek's basketball acumen and his reasoning for wanting Luka is likely quite different than someone who really gets the game. He's an excitable techie. Now when Donnie Nelson says we have to get this kid or else....that's an opinion with some weight. Same as Petrie on his way out saying, get this Giannis kid. Those are guys who have lived and breathed this game for decades.

Vivek's responsibility is hiring experts to make the right decisions, not to make the decisions himself as a non expert.
Sometimes the owner may get it right and an esteemed GM may get it wrong. Jerry West wanted Sidney Moncrief. Jerry Buss wanted Magic Johnson. There always appears to be an exception to every rule. I guess the important thing is for all parties concerned to realize when in fact there is an exception and not consider it from then on a rule.
 
Nope. Here (in part) is what it says:

Ranadive, sources say, ramped up his interest in learning all about his team’s scouting process earlier this season and sought more insight about their collective network, with the belief that it was a reaction to previous draft events and the looming questions about why Doncic wasn’t selected.
correct and why wouldn’t he. Even ignoring the previous org under Vlade or picks have been.

WCS - gone on minimum contract
Pappa G - out of the league
Malachi Richardson - out of league
Skal L - on minimum
DeArron Fox - Starter
Justin Jackson - barely hanging on
Harry Giles - Option not picked up
Marvin Bagley - unproven

Given this drafting history he damm well should be doing a full review of the scouting review.
 
correct and why wouldn’t he. Even ignoring the previous org under Vlade or picks have been.

WCS - gone on minimum contract
Pappa G - out of the league
Malachi Richardson - out of league
Skal L - on minimum
DeArron Fox - Starter
Justin Jackson - barely hanging on
Harry Giles - Option not picked up
Marvin Bagley - unproven

Given this drafting history he damm well should be doing a full review of the scouting review.
Vlade drafting has been atrocious, with the exception of Fox, and being a small market team, drafting correctly is the ONLY way of sustained success.

My hope is that if the Kings land a good lottery pick this summer, we will have a different GM making the pick this year.
 
Vlade drafting has been atrocious, with the exception of Fox, and being a small market team, drafting correctly is the ONLY way of sustained success.

My hope is that if the Kings land a good lottery pick this summer, we will have a different GM making the pick this year.
I’d be happy enough to just send one of the more informed posters from this board. Let Vivek save on hiring a new GM and send Vlade out for a smoke just before we pick.
 
Good. He absolutely shouldn’t move on. Vlade set the franchise back infinitely. Basically a mistake that can’t be overcome from a team like Sacramento.
At least now I know we're not alone...

And on top of that, you're absolutely right about the impact a superstar in the making like Luka Doncic will have on a small market team like Sacramento.
 
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I don't dwell on Donovan Mitchell much because nobody expected him to be this good which is why he wasn't taken with one of the top picks. I honestly don't even remember him being talked about much during that draft.
 
I don't dwell on Donovan Mitchell much because nobody expected him to be this good which is why he wasn't taken with one of the top picks. I honestly don't even remember him being talked about much during that draft.
He was the fastest riser in that draft (Mitchell then Zach Collins). Went from the 20s to the late lotto in most projections. Had Fox been off the board, I would've been fine with Josh Jackson/Tatum at 5. Then Mitchell at 10. Of the PGs, my rankings were Ball > Fox > DSJ > Mitchell > Fultz.
 
I don't dwell on Donovan Mitchell much because nobody expected him to be this good which is why he wasn't taken with one of the top picks. I honestly don't even remember him being talked about much during that draft.
This is such a lame excuse and a reason fans forgive horrible front offices for so long. "Man, no one knew Klay would be this good. Man, no one knew Bam Adebayo would be this good. Man, no one no Donovan Mitchell would be this good. Man, no one knew Kawhi Leonard would be this good. Man, no one knew Draymond Green would be this good." And so on and so forth.

At some point, a front-office has to be held accountable for making poor decision after poor decision. Not a coincidence that great organizations like Miami, Toronto, Utah, OKC, San Antonio etc are able to mine the draft almost yearly and find quality talent. If you aren't one of the top 3-5 orgs where Free Agents actually want to play, you have to dominate the draft. And that's been Vlade's weakest attribute to date.
 
This is such a lame excuse and a reason fans forgive horrible front offices for so long. "Man, no one knew Klay would be this good. Man, no one knew Bam Adebayo would be this good. Man, no one no Donovan Mitchell would be this good. Man, no one knew Kawhi Leonard would be this good. Man, no one knew Draymond Green would be this good." And so on and so forth.

At some point, a front-office has to be held accountable for making poor decision after poor decision. Not a coincidence that great organizations like Miami, Toronto, Utah, OKC, San Antonio etc are able to mine the draft almost yearly and find quality talent. If you aren't one of the top 3-5 orgs where Free Agents actually want to play, you have to dominate the draft. And that's been Vlade's weakest attribute to date.
Yea I mean it's not a totally forgettable offense. I've said for months now that I want Vlade gone yesterday. Like, I want to go back in time and see him fired before the offseason.
 
This is such a lame excuse and a reason fans forgive horrible front offices for so long. "Man, no one knew Klay would be this good. Man, no one knew Bam Adebayo would be this good. Man, no one no Donovan Mitchell would be this good. Man, no one knew Kawhi Leonard would be this good. Man, no one knew Draymond Green would be this good." And so on and so forth.

At some point, a front-office has to be held accountable for making poor decision after poor decision. Not a coincidence that great organizations like Miami, Toronto, Utah, OKC, San Antonio etc are able to mine the draft almost yearly and find quality talent. If you aren't one of the top 3-5 orgs where Free Agents actually want to play, you have to dominate the draft. And that's been Vlade's weakest attribute to date.
Which is even worse for Luka, the guy was a star before coming over and we still botched it...

anyway, I digress. Don't wanna get banned over changing subjects.
 
correct and why wouldn’t he. Even ignoring the previous org under Vlade or picks have been.

WCS - gone on minimum contract
Pappa G - out of the league
Malachi Richardson - out of league
Skal L - on minimum
DeArron Fox - Starter
Justin Jackson - barely hanging on
Harry Giles - Option not picked up
Marvin Bagley - unproven

Given this drafting history he damm well should be doing a full review of the scouting review.
yeah thats pretty poor drafting.

I notice a couple things here, first Vlade seems to always be looking for that magical big man and second he pretty much just drafts from high profile programs.

Pappa G was an obscure pick but a big. That same draft had one of todays best bigs in Piscal Siakam, who played for the low profile New Mexico State. Skal from Kentucky and Malichi from Syracuse both went before Piscal.

The following year all his picks including Frank Mason went to big programs. After Fox I won’t bother mentioning better choices from smaller programs.
This years JJ did go to Wyoming, so that might make for an argument.

Anyways, seems like a diminished ability to scout talent to me.

just saw that Siakam went 27 and Skal 28, memory must be going.
 
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Sam Amick is talking about whats happened since his podcast. He said he has talked to people in the know from around the league who said what is going on with vivek and him not being able to get over luka, what was revealed on the podcast is just the tip of the iceberg.

Its impossible to get over because of who luka has become right out of the chute, a legit MVP candidate, and that bagley can't even stay on the court. Luka could have changed the entire future of this franchise and vivek knows it and its eating him up. This is not good.

Ive always thought vlade was as good as gone. Now I'm positive it shouldn't be long. Its whats best for the franchise. The guy who blew the biggest draft the kings have ever had has got to go so everyone can move on.