Kings unveil well done new logos; part of rebranding of franchise

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There is a lot of rebranding going on with the Sacramento Kings.

Some of that they are trying to make happen on the court, which will start when they bring in a new coach (results pending on that part).

However, more may be happening off the court with the team about to move into an impressive new building in downtown Sacramento. Part of that was the unveiling of the new team logos on Tuesday.

I like the new logos (you can see them above), which are both retro and updated, and it’s a clean look.

The Kings are a franchise that could use an image change. There was a time a little more than a decade ago when they were near the NBA mountaintop, but it’s been a steady slide since then — including the team almost moving out of town. There were questionable management decisions first by the former owners the Maloofs (as their personal fortunes dwindled), then by the new owner Vivek Ranadive, who has had a rough learning curve on the job. On the court, there has been a parade of coaches but no playoffs for a decade. The building they were in felt old. The word dysfunction seemed to fit too many moves and decisions.

The Kings see this summer as a fresh new start. The logos are part of that, and it’s a good first step.

The new building in downtown Sacramento should be a big leap regarding image. I’ve been fortunate to tour the facility (more details to follow on that another day), and it feels like another thing the Kings have gotten right. It’s an indoor building but with as much outdoor feel as they can get thanks to massive windows (which retract to allow in the night air for certain events in the right conditions). The sightlines are great, it feels open and spacious. Most importantly, it feels very Sacramento — from the food options through the environmentally friendly touches. It’s also a modern NBA building — the team’s training facilities and medical facilities will be in the same building complex.

All that leaves is the on-the-court issues to fix. That may be the hardest part, and it’s not going to happen quickly, even with DeMarcus Cousins under contract. The jury is still out on how this will go. The Kings are in the midst of a coaching search, which should inform a lot of decisions that follow. The good news is that hands-on owner Ranadive is letting Divac and the basketball people make the decision without interference. Whatever you think of Divac the GM, this is a change and a step in the right direction. The next one will be to stick with one coach and one style of play for multiple years, let some continuity develop.

That all takes time. In the short term, the logos are here and look sharp.

NBA fines Kyrie Irving for profanity directed toward fan in Philly (VIDEO)

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We were waiting for this moment this weekend and now it’s here. Boston Celtics point guard Kyrie Irving has been fined $25,000 by the NBA for cursing at a fan in Philadelphia after the Celtics beat the 76ers.

This comes in the wake of the DeMarcus Cousins getting fined the same amount for getting into a similar altercation with a fan.

The NBA released the news Sunday in a statement issued through their PR department.

Via Twitter:

If you haven’t seen video of the incident, you can watch it below. Fair warning, there is obviously some very NSFW language in the media the ahead.

For what it’s worth, Irving said that he did not regret saying anything to the fan.

Via ESPN:

“At the end of the day, we’re human. It’s in heat of the moment and frustrations arise, we were at halftime, we were down by 4, in an environment, a season-opener in Philly. Being with a young team like we have here and staying composed, handling that before we go in the locker room and addressing what we have to do in the locker room and going out and handling business and getting the W, that’s really the only thing that matters to me.

“It’s up to the league at this point. But, like I said, I’m going to take full responsibility for what I said. I don’t have any regrets for it.”

Boston’s next game is on Tuesday at home against New York.

Bobby Portis apologizes for punching Nikola Mirotic in the face (VIDEO)

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As if this season wasn’t going to be hard enough for the Chicago Bulls, it started off on the wrong foot when Bobby Portis and Nikola Mirotic got into a fight during practice. That fight resulted in a facial fracture for Mirotic, putting one of Chicago’s best players out for multiple weeks.

Portis addressed the issue this week by apologizing to fans, the team, and Mirotic. However, Portis said that he has not heard from Mirotic since the fight, and that he did not respond when he tried to call his teammate.

Video of Portis’ apology is interesting if only because it’s a bit hard to discern the level of sincerity.

Via Twitter:

Chicago is 0-2 on the season. Portis is in the middle of serving an 8 game suspension for the incident.

Giannis Antetokounmpo scores career-high 44, dedicates game to father

Associated Press
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MILWAUKEE (AP) — After scoring a career-high 44 points, Giannis Antetokounmpo wrote a note on the game ball.

“This is for daddy. We got a win tonight,” the 22-year-old Milwaukee Bucks player said, remembering his father, Charles, who died last month at age 54.

Antetokounmpo scored 17 points in the fourth quarter, including a dunk that put Milwaukee ahead 111-110 with 11 seconds to go.

After a timeout, Damian Lillard found Jusuf Nurkic running open down the lane, but Antetokounmpo blocked his shot at the basket, sending the 7-foot center crashing to the floor.

Antetokounmpo, starting his fifth NBA season, made 17 of 23 shots with eight rebounds and four assists as Milwaukee kept pace with a Portland team that had dominated its first two opponents. The Bucks star is averaging 38.3 points through three games, up from 22.9 last year, 16.9 in 2015-16 and 12.7 in 2014-15.

“Seventy-nine more. This is just the beginning,” he said, thinking about how many regular-season games remain.

After Nurkic was rejected at the basket, Khris Middleton was fouled and made both free throws.

“They committed two guys to Dame, so somebody was going to be open,” Portland coach Terry Stotts said, referring to Lillard. “Turned out to be Nurk but they made a really good defensive play.”

Lillard scored 26 points, including 16 in the fourth quarter. CJ McCollum also scored 26, and Nurkic had 17 points and 11 rebounds. Tony Snell scored 17 points and Middleton added 16 for Milwaukee.

 

Stephen Curry, Kevin Durant ejected at end of loss to Grizzlies

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Stephen Curry is going to get fined for this.

The former MVP was frustrated, his team losing and thinking he was fouled by Mike Conley as he attacked the rim late in the Warriors loss in Memphis Saturday night. Curry threw his mouthpiece at the referee, which deservedly got him ejected instantly.

Durant followed him to the locker room, making a gesture that will earn him a fine as well.

The Warriors are 1-2 to start the season and there are a lot of factors at play. The China trip does this to teams, and throw in three straight trips to the Finals on top of it and it has an impact. The team is a little banged up. However, the biggest issue is their defense is a mess right now.

The Warriors will straighten it out eventually, but the start of the season could be a rough one for them.