New Kings head coach Dave Joerger wants to bring the “grit and grind” philosophy he employed in Memphis with him to Sacramento, Jason Jones of The Sacramento Bee writes. “We’re going to bring that here,” said lead assistant coach Elston Turner, who was also on Joerger’s staff in Memphis. “We’re going to pick up the physicality; we’re going to put our hands on you. Teams are going to know that we’re on the floor. So the [Kings’] scoring may come down a bit, but believe me, the defensive part is going to raise up.”
“That’s what we want to do as an organization,” Joerger added. “If we’re going to play winning basketball, we feel like we’ve got to do a better job defensively, and we want to set that tone with this crew and especially the guys that are going to be on the roster. They’re going to have three steps forward in advantage when training camp comes.”
Here’s more from out of the Pacific Division:
- The Warriors didn’t make a contract offer to Marreese Speights, who inked a one-year deal with the Division-rival Clippers on Friday, Marcus Thompson of The Bay Area News Group relays (on Twitter).
- One big man the Warriors have expressed interest in adding to the roster is veteran Kendrick Perkins, who is friends with newly signed Kevin Durant, Alex Kennedy of Basketball Insiders tweets. The 31-year-old appeared in 37 games for the Pelicans last season, averaging 2.5 points and 3.5 rebounds in 14.6 minutes per outing.
- Lakers GM Mitch Kupchak is optimistic that the team’s offseason additions will move the franchise in the right direction, but the executive stopped short of predicting a playoff berth in 2016/17, Mark Medina of The Orange County Register relays. “I’m not quite sure what to expect,” Kupchak said. “A lot has to be seen from our young players before determining how much they can help us. With the veterans, they’re going to need some help from the younger players. They need to give them energy and quickness.”
- Kupchak also discussed the signing of center Timofey Mozgov, noting that adding depth at the five was a priority heading into the offseason, Medina relays. “From the beginning, it was a priority for us to get a big player,” Kupchak said. “I’m not going to tell you who the first, second or third or fourth [option] was. But clearly we were aggressive at the center position.”