Sacramento Kings: nba FUTURES & BETTING ODDS
The Rochester Royals began play in 1948-49 in the Basketball Association of America, joining the NBA the following season. In their second season in the NBA, the team led by Arnie Risen and Bob Davies won the NBA title over the New York Knicks in seven games. That remains the only championship in franchise history.
The franchise moved to Cincinnati for the 1957-58 season, becoming the Cincinnati Royals. Their early stars included Jack Twyman and Maurice Stokes, and then Oscar Robertson, the 1960-61 Rookie of the Year. Even with Robertson in tow, the team still never made it to the NBA Finals, losing to the Boston Celtics in the 1963 and 1964 playoffs. Robertson would be named league MVP after the 1963-64 season.
The team would miss the postseason in each of their final five seasons in Cincinnati before moving to Kansas City and Omaha, splitting games between the two cities, and then eventually moving to Kansas City full time. The highlight of this stretch was the 1980-81 season, when the team, led by Otis Birdsong, lost to the Houston Rockets in the Western conference finals.
For the 1985-86 season, the team moved out west, becoming the Sacramento Kings. Fans that bet on the Sacramento Kings to make the playoffs in their first season were thrilled to see the team qualify despite a 37-45 record, but they were immediately swept by the Houston Rockets. Some people felt that Sacramento Kings odds of becoming a perennial playoff team were good, but the team would regress, missing the next nine postseasons.
Finally, in 1995-96, the team would snap the streak and make the playoffs as the eighth seed. This would be star guard Mitch Richmond’s only playoff appearance as a King, and while diehard fans bet on the Sacramento Kings to shock the Sonics, the team fell in four games.
After missing the 1996 and 1997 playoffs, the Kings retooled, signing center Vlade Divac, and trading for star forward Chris Webber. The Sacramento Kings odds of becoming a championship contender looked better than ever, though the team would fall in decisive fifth playoff games to the Jazz, and then to the Lakers the following season.
By 2001-02 the Kings were loaded with talent with Webber, Divac, Peja Stojakovic, and guards Jason Williams and Doug Christie and the team went 61-21 in the regular season. Many experts bet on the Sacramento Kings to make the NBA Finals, and that looked like it would happen when they led the Lakers 3-2 in the Western finals, but the Lakers shot 27 free throws in the fourth quarter of Game 6 and the Kings ultimately fell in seven games in one of the most controversial series in NBA history.
The Sacramento Kings odds still looked good heading into the 2002-03 season, but after winning 59 regular season games, the team once again lost a seventh game, this time to the Mavericks. Experts still bet on the Sacramento Kings to win big in 2003-04 and they came through in the regular season winning 55 games. However, for the third year in a row the team lost a Game 7, falling to Kevin Garnett and the Timberwolves.
The Kings would lose Webber, Divac, and Christie after the 2004 playoffs and while they still made the following two postseasons, they have not won a playoff series since Webber and Divac left. The Kings would be knocked out of the 2005 playoffs by the Sonics in the first round, then suffer a quick exit at the hands of the Spurs in 2006.
In any of the past thirteen seasons, had you bet on the Sacramento Kings to have had a .500 record or better, that would have been a losing bet. A period where the Kings were coached by former star Reggie Theus in 2007-08 did not work out. By 2009, the team was no longer selling out their home arena after a decade of sellouts.
The Sacramento Kings odds to have the first pick in the 2009 draft were better than any other team’s, but they fell to the fourth pick, where they drafted Tyreke Evans, who would be named Rookie of the Year. Fans bet on the Sacramento Kings to return to the playoffs after they drafted Kentucky center DeMarcus Cousins the following season, but the team only won 24 games in 2010-11. In fact, the Sacramento Kings odds never improved, as the team failed to win even 30 games in a season from 2009 through 2015.
The team under new ownership from Vivek Ranadive, tried many different things, including hiring former star Vlade Divac as GM, but the team has still not been back to the postseason since 2006. Recently though, it appears that the Sacramento Kings odds have improved, and under a young core led by De’Aaron Fox and Buddy Hield appears poised to end the postseason drought.
Championships: 1 (1951, as Rochester Royals)
1: Nate ‘Tiny’ Archibald
2: Mitch Richmond
4: Chris Webber
6: “The sixth man”
11: Bob Davies
12: Maurice Stokes
14: Oscar Robertson
16: Peja Stojakovic
21: Vlade Divac
27: Jack Twyman
44: Sam Lacey