WCS willing to change roles?

Discussion in 'Kings Rap' started by kingsfan1984, Oct 14, 2017.

  1. kingsfan1984

    kingsfan1984 Well-Known Member

    Im not critical of him experimenting. In fact id like to see him experment more. Maybe he could play around with boxing out, trying to play defense, playing with fire and intensity etc.

    WCS needs to know we are watching him and remember the positive play on the court following fan criticism of his rebounding. We are still watching and crave more!
    notoriousBEN3 likes this.
  2. mac

    mac Well-Known Member

    Well ... with how things worked out and what we got for him that might not have been a bad idea
    Nokidding likes this.
  3. KingsFanGER

    KingsFanGER Well-Known Member

    Watched the final preseason game of the Bucks yesterday and once again came away asking myself, why Willie refuses to do, what Maker does. I mean Maker is no world beater and he sounded pretty entitled, when he claimed he would be an NBA champion and MVP one day, but the kid goes full throttle for every minute he is on the floor. He does everything WCS does - switch onto guards on D, run the floor, rebound, contest shots etc. - but with so much more intensity. He was going against Drummond and Marjanovic and therefore was outmuscled severely, but he didn't quit, fought hard, used his speed and length to front them on D and ran the floor full speed at all times, forcing the slower, bigger Detroit guys to play catchup.
    It was a preseason game, Maker just came back from an ankle injury and still it's obvious how much he wants to be out there, even if he basically has no role on offense and how he is perfectly fine with playing D and doing the little things to help his team win. That's a supposedly 20 year old, with no college experience in his second season, dreaming of being the best player in the league and still not shying away from the dirty work.

    I disagree on the take, that it's just preseason and that we therefore should overlook the terrible intensity Willie showed during the games. Last year it was just SL, then it was DMC blocking his development or a solid backup big like KK was the reason, Willie wasn't getting enough minutes. When is it ok to actually start looking at Willie?
    He stated, that he wants to be one of the main cogs of this team. He obviously has the talent and tools to be just that. But in order to do this, he has to up his intensity and his willingness to do the dirty work.

    I cut Cousins some slack, when he took plays off in the past and didn't join the group of fans, who blamed him for it, because in recent years he shouldered an enourmous load for this team. Cousins also was a big, heavy dude and wasn't explosive or fast by any means. I didn't like it, when he had troubles running back in time or when he halfheartedly closed out to the 3pt line or made lazy reach in attempts, when smaller players took him off the dribble, but I understood that it was part of the package and that he was doing vastly more good things for the team than bad.

    But Willie isn't Cousins. He isn't as talented and his body enables him to do things, Cousins can only dream off.
    Where is the benefit of having maybe the most athletic 7 footer in the league on the roster, when he hasn't the will and intensity to use that athleticism at all times?
    Willie should be flying over the court like Maker, Giannis or other freaks of nature, no matter if it's preseason, SL or a regular season game.
    Otherwise his value for the team isn't high enough to beat guys like KK or even Papa for minutes.


    So, after 6 preseason games, WCS has been elected by this site as this years "whipping boy"? Good to know.
    King Baller likes this.
  5. jcassio

    jcassio Well-Known Member

    Yeah. While everyone is entitled to an opinion, all the spewing at WCS is embarrassing.
    JCTNKINGFAN likes this.
  6. KingsFanGER

    KingsFanGER Well-Known Member

    There will always be disagreement when it comes to the players of the Kings.
    There will always be valid or invalid criticism.
    Wether it's Cousins, Ben, Rudy, Rondo or even Skal, Buddy or Willie, people see different things and form their opinions based on that. When there is dissent, sites like Kingsfans.com become interesting.

    Willie approaches his 3rd season. Over the past two seasons, most users on this site were entirely pro Willie.
    But at some point fans want to see improvement. And while Willie improved some aspects of his game (jumpshot for example) most of us had the expectation, that he would be a defensive anchor for this young up and coming team. So far he hasn't shown that. And given his athletic abilities, there aren't many explanations why he can't be a stud defender. Lacking intensity is one possible explanation. If you are able to come up with a different explanation - please go ahead.

    So I disagree, that people form their opinion based on 6 preseason games. And I also think getting some criticism, doesn't make Willie the "whipping boy".
    VF21 likes this.
  7. VF21

    VF21 #KingsFansForever Staff Member Contributor

    I agree with each of you. His future is still in his own hands at this moment, but Vlade will not wait forever (nor should he).

    I think they're making valid points. WCS isn't a rookie. We've got a couple of years of watching him...and the handwriting IMHO is beginning to appear on the wall. He needs to step up and step up NOW for me to regain the faith I once had in him, and I was really excited to have him on the Kings.
    kingsfan1984, SLAB and KingsFanGER like this.
  8. VF21

    VF21 #KingsFansForever Staff Member Contributor

    I'm going to disagree with both you and jcassio as regarding WCS being the "whipping boy". I think most of the criticism of him is more than justified. I will concede that a lot of times people around here (myself included) tend to "pile on" when we're frustrated about a certain player, but I think you have to acknowledge that the WCS we've seen the past couple of years is NOT the WCS any of us who supported his coming to the Kings were expecting to see.
  9. dude12

    dude12 Well-Known Member

    It takes zero talent to play hard.
    notoriousBEN3 likes this.
  10. bajaden

    bajaden Well-Known Member

    Just so you know, I was a big fan of Cousins, and I took the same approach with Cousins that I'm taking with Willie. Big men traditionally take 3 to 4 years to reach whatever level they're going to reach. By no means am I going to let Willie off the hook for lack of intensity. Whatever improvements he makes on the offensive side of the ball shouldn't come at the expense of the defensive side of the ball. However, I don't put a lot of emphasis on what occurs in preseason games. And, I don't think it has to be either/or.

    It appears to me that their trying to run a lot of the game through Willie in the high post. When a team is working on certain things, I'm willing to excuse the lack of performance in other areas. But only in preseason. If I see some of these things carry over to the regular season, then I'll get concerned about them. But my god folks, can we at least get 20 games into the season before we start forming the lynch mob. I know some of you have put a label on Willie, and if he does anything to change that label your upset. Willie's idea of who he is may be different than yours. And his idea may not be the right one either. But I'll never fault a player for trying to expand his game. Especially a young player.

    The hard part is taking the things you've worked on and smoothly merging them into your game. Most times, it doesn't happen smoothly. Plus, I think it can affect your focus in other area's. I don't think that's an excuse, but it is a historical fact. If it works you have yourself a more valuable player. If it doesn't, well, then you've wasted a lot of time. I'm hoping for the former. Whatever the outcome, Willie's fate will likely be decided at season's end. My hope is that he earn's that extension and becomes the King's center of the future. But he does have to earn it.
  11. twslam07

    twslam07 Well-Known Member

    If Cauley-Stein proves to be our center of the future, great! If he doesn't, there are many great C prospects in the upcoming draft: Ayton, Bamba, Carter, Williams, & Richards to name a few

    In fact, this drafts strengths seem to be our weaknesses (SF & C).

    PG we have Fox & Mason
    SG we have Bogdanovic, Hield, & Richardson
    SF we have Jackson
    PF we have Labissiere & Giles
    C we have Cauley-Stein & Papagiannis

    You add Porter (or Ayton/Bamba if Cauley-Stein struggles) to that core, and your talent is very well balanced across positions.
  12. bajaden

    bajaden Well-Known Member

    I don't want to get into an X's and O's discussion here, but let me ask everyone a question. Do you hold Willie to a higher defensive standard than a lot of the other players? The reason I ask, is because Buddy Hield is far from being a defensive specialist. Skal makes a ton of mistakes on defense at times and really struggles when guarding a small, quick PF. I'm far from an authority, but I've read quite a few books on basketball, including a couple that are about nothing but defensive schemes.

    Now some aren't going to like this, but there are some on this forum with loud voices, that wouldn't know a good defensive scheme if it bit them in the butt. Does Willie make mistakes at times? You bet, but usually because he's trying to do too much, but I've seen him criticized at times for actually doing the right thing on defense. I've watched games a second time where I've done nothing but watch him on every play he's in. And to be honest, there are times when I'm screaming at my television. But he's not alone in that category.

    If your judging Willie on nothing but blocked shots, then I have nothing to say to you. The way the Kings use Willie doesn't allow for many blocked shots. But I've seen Willie disrupt a lot of pick and rolls. I'm not saying he doesn't make mistakes, but my main complaint is in the rebounding dept. There are times when he becomes a spectator, and that's inexcusable. Those are the moments that really irritate me. In his first year at Kentucky, Calipari stuck Willie soley under the basket, and he blocked a ton of shots. By his third year he was playing more and more on the perimeter defending the pick and roll, and many times defending the best player on the other team. But he wasn't blocking many shots.

    In the preseason game against the Clippers can anyone tell me how many times Griffin scored with Willie guarding him? Once, by my count. How many times did he score with Randolph guarding him? Every time but once by my count. There are times when I'm not sure what other people are looking at. Maybe they have their minds made up already and I'm wasting my time here.
  13. bajaden

    bajaden Well-Known Member

    I agree completely, and maybe the Kings drafting a Bamba, Bagley or an Ayton would be the best thing to happen to Willie. He'd have some serious competition. But your right about our needs. The top five players in the draft right now, at least on paper, are Centers and SF's, two positions of possible need for us. If you consider Miles Bridges the 6th best player you can add another SF to the mix. So yeah, this next draft could be an impact draft for us.
  14. bajaden

    bajaden Well-Known Member

    Just ask Jack Cooley!
    dude12 likes this.
  15. kingsfan1984

    kingsfan1984 Well-Known Member

    WCS sticks out like a sore thumb when he isn't being aggressive. When he is passive he looks to not have intensity especially noticable on the boards. I think he draws this criticism while ithers may be getting a pass due to the glaring differnece in an aggresive/intense/engaged WCS and the passive/disinterested WCS.

    Skal could easily be added to this exact line of criticism however WCS is entering his 3rd year (was older rookie) and will be looked at to set the tone as a leader. Fox i think rubs off on WCS and brings out the more energetic WCS, but Willie should be figuring out how to bring and maintain that energy at all times if he is going to be looked at as a leader on the team.
    206Fan, bajaden and VF21 like this.
  16. Kings Faithful

    Kings Faithful Well-Known Member

    WCS appears to want to be a focus of the offense. What he doesn't seem to realize is that he would be just that if he specialized in put backs and ally-oops... DeAndre Jordan style. Except he can hit a free throw.

    That being said i still have hope in him. He's proven he can do it. Just need to see the results on the court.
  17. Kingster

    Kingster Well-Known Member

    You're right. We should have traded Cousins after his second year.:p
  18. Kingster

    Kingster Well-Known Member

    Hey Willie,

    Since you only seem to go 100% when you're getting it from the fans....

    You're offense sucks!

    You make everybody on the team look like Mr. Hustle in comparison to you.

    You rebounded at the end of last year against a bunch of teams playing for the lottery or resting their players for the playoffs, so you padded your rebound stats.

    You're totally over-rated on the defensive end of the floor. You're the guy who could guard all 5 positions on the floor??? Was that all 5 at once Willie, or one at a time, big guy?

    Now prove me wrong.
    kingsfan1984 and sono like this.
  19. ppine

    ppine Well-Known Member

    Every team needs a guy around like Cooley to remind everyone in practice what playing hard looks like.
    VF21 likes this.
  20. jcassio

    jcassio Well-Known Member

    "Piling on" is one way to describe it...
    And you object to the term "whipping boy?"
    I think criticsm of WCS is fair. But this thread goes beyond that. And you encourage it.
    JCTNKINGFAN likes this.
  21. bajaden

    bajaden Well-Known Member

    I had been waiting! :rolleyes:
    Kingster likes this.
  22. bajaden

    bajaden Well-Known Member

    That ought to do it... Not a match, not a fire, but a freaking flame thrower.... Well done there!!
    Kingster and kingsfan1984 like this.
  23. dude12

    dude12 Well-Known Member

    How about WCS prove critics wrong tonight and be a difference maker.
  24. King Baller

    King Baller Well-Known Member

    What is Willie doing tonight? The Rockets game is on Wednesday.
  25. King Baller

    King Baller Well-Known Member

  26. Larry David

    Larry David Well-Known Member

    Yes, I do. Willie has limited offensive fundamentals and doesn't regularly rebound at a high rate, so his defense needs to be good for him to be above average and also seems to be the best path forward for him becoming an impact player.

    My concerns Willie isn't one issue, because he's young-ish and players can fix their issues. It's that there are so many issues that continue to come and go.

    * Effort / desire
    * Basketball IQ / generally goofy dude
    * Rebounding rate
    * Offensive ceiling
    * Gravitating toward trying to do more on offense as his role expands

    None of them are gaping holes and he could fix any/all of them.

    If he wasn't working with so many issues that are essentially systemic for his future, I would be more optimistic. Plus, in any given week, he either struggles or does better with some of those issues. It's like working on anyone / anything, the more variables that keep popping up and going awry, it's just harder to stay on track and end up with a great final product.

    He's always reminded me of John Salley. If he can get serious and focus himself, I think that's probably where he lands.
  27. Larry David

    Larry David Well-Known Member

    The bloom is coming off the Willie rose for some. While I'm not a huge fan, to me, he's still the Kings best post prospect to be among the top 8 guys on a team that can go deep into the playoffs. I'd rank them.

    1. WCS (I don't love him now, but I can see where he could go to contribute on a good team)
    2. Skal (Super talented, much higher ceiling the WCS .... but to me, his red flags regarding his toughness, willingness to fight and compete and mental strength will determine whether he breaks through or shakes out. Whether he capitalizes on his talent and skills is an open question to me)
    3. Giles (Tons of talent, also seems mentally wired the right way ... but very unclear whether he'll ever be even remotely physically right and how much explosion and quickness will remain if he does)
    4. Papa

    So, you need to see what Willie can do and where he's at mentally. After 40-50 games, the team will have a clearer idea of who he is. Then again, so will the league, so I'm not sure he nets a ton if the Kings reach the conclusion that he's not going to turn a corner.
  28. bajaden

    bajaden Well-Known Member

    Not saying there aren't legit gripes about Willie. All I'm saying is maybe our expectations are a bit to high, or perhaps our time schedule isn't a fair one. Fox started playiing basketball when he was 8 yr's old. Not unusual, and most of the players playing in the NBA started at an early age. Willie started his junior year in highschool. Before that he was a very highly regarded wide receiver on his football team. So like it or not, he started from behind and is still playing catch up.

    You can call that an excuse, but I simply call it a fact. Now we can either accept that, and be patient, or we can continue to howl at the moon. I happen to think there's a lot of potential there, and I want to see that come to fruition on the Kings, and not another team. One of the reasons the Kings are in the situation their in, is because they haven't had any patience. They keep changing GM's, Coaches, and Players. That said, I could be dead wrong about Willie. My wanting him to be a solid player won't make it so. But I'd like to find out.

    I will certainlly grant you this. He has to perform this season. I suspect the starting job is his to lose, so it's time for him to rise to the occasion.
  29. King Baller

    King Baller Well-Known Member

  30. Larry David

    Larry David Well-Known Member

    That's super fair. I'm not saying you are wrong, looking at this wrong, or the circumstances you raise aren't right.

    I'm just saying that it's fairly unclear whether Willie gets there. And that the path forward for getting him there isn't obvious based upon the person and issues in play.

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