OK, what exactly is going on here? The Kings climbed a minimum of two spots in four of the six national polls sampled here. They soared six spots in SI.com, peaking at 19th there and also at CBS Sports.
So what’s behind a week that saw the Kings gain a total of 14 spots? Most likely an eventful 2-2 record. The week included a road win at Oklahoma City and a double-overtime loss at Dallas on a last-second three-point shot by Deron Williams (what was Rajon Rondo doing on the bench?).
The Kings split two games at home. They beat the Los Angeles Lakers (despite squandering a 27-point lead), and lost to the Golden State Warriors with a foul-plagued DeMarcus Cousins on the bench for most of the third quarter.
The Bee’s Jason Jones ranked the Kings 18th, up four spots from last week.
NBA.com: 20th, up from 24th. From the site: “Sacramento has scored 117 points per 100 possessions in 118 minutes with (reserves) Darren Collison and Marco Belinelli on the floor together this month. Of course, the defense has been bad, especially in transition, which is nothing new.”
NBC Sports: 20th, up from 22nd. From the site: “ … there still feels like a push and pull between the players on the roster and what coach George Karl (and presumably owner Vivek Ranadive) want from their team. So they struggle even as (DeMarcus) Cousins puts up insane numbers.”
ESPN: 22nd, up from 24th. From the site: “All in all, though, it wasn’t the worst week, given what Boogie Cousins did in Oklahoma City and the fact Sacramento didn’t completely squander that Lakers game.”
CBS Sports: 19th, holding steady from last week. From the site: “Their defense is holding them back from being a playoff team right now.”
SI.com: 19th, up from 25th. From the site: “All-NBA caliber play from DeMarcus Cousins (four straight double-doubles, averaging 32.4 and 13 in January) has the Kings starting to string together competitive, high-scoring performances.”
Yahoo: 13th, holding steady from last week. The site’s rankings, dubbed ‘Most Interesting’ admits to a “certain level of fascination with these goofball Kings,” so that could explain the team’s continued appearance. From the site: “Lost in the fury that was the Stephen Curry Show on Saturday night was the image of the Sacramento Kings actually giving the Warriors a competitive game ... . Sacramento has won three of five (with one of those losses coming in a double-overtime defeat to Dallas) and is just two games out of the West’s playoff bracket, due in large part to a thunderous offense.”
Compiled by Jeff Caraska