Omri Casspi is not having fun sitting on the bench watching the Kings lose. (Well, not the last week or so when they have been winning, but you get the idea.) With Marcus Thornton and Francisco Garcia starting on the wings and Donte Green getting time in front of him off the bench, Casspi was given a DNP-CD on Sunday. He’s had a few of those in recent weeks.
And like the Maloof brothers, it has him thinking of getting out of Sacramento. Although, in Casspi’s case it’s thinking about getting away from the Kings.
“It’s not easy for me to sit on the bench, which has happened to me quite a bit in Sacramento’s last few games,” Casspi wrote. “I’m a player who lives the game. And as soon as you take away the thing I love the most in the world, playing basketball, it is hard for me.
“The situation in Sacramento is not like it used to be in the past. Coach Paul Westphal is experimenting and trying different things and I’m certainly not in his plans. We have six more games until the end of the season, and although I won’t say that I’m counting the seconds, it is clear to me that I will have to make some decisions at the end of the year….
“I know that there are many teams, including some playoff teams, that want me ahead of next season.” Casspi wrote. “I hope to find myself in a team that appreciates me as a player and a person, a team that plays like a team.
“I still don’t know if I will definitely not be continuing with the Kings. I’ve got a contract and love the fans, the city, the owner and the general manager. But things haven’t worked out and that is legitimate.”
Casspi is in only the second year of his rookie deal, making $1.3 million. The Kings have a guaranteed next year followed by a team option for the year after that, plus rights to keep him beyond that time. So, basically, if they don’t want to trade him they don’t have to. He has little leverage to force a trade.
The good news for Casspi is situation with the Kings could be very different next year.
With the seemingly certain move to Anaheim is rumored to come big changes in terms of coach (and up the front office chain). That would mean a new system and a chance for Casspi to earn more court time. Plus there will be lifestyle changes. Honestly, Orange County could change his mind. Players will leave near the beach in Newport Beach or nearby areas and the atmosphere will be different than Sacramento. Better or worse is a matter of taste (I’m an L.A. guy, a Long Beach guy really, I wouldn’t want to live in the OC, but some people love it. And I’ll admit there are cool parts.)
One way or another, Casspi may get his changes.