With players trickling back to Sacramento, the Kings practice facility in Natomas was a bit livelier today. Francisco Garcia, DeMarcus Cousins, Tyreke Evans, Isaiah Thomas, Jason Thompson, Hassan Whiteside and J.J. Hickson all wandered onto the practice court at various times this afternoon.
Since they’re currently not obligated to,
none of the players addressed media only Jason Thompson addressed media (I had to leave before he did). But the curtain was raised while a few of them organized a light scrimmage session. We have some video (without audio) of that, plus additional notes after the jump.
Now that the contact rule has essentially been lifted, a few members of the front office and coaching staff interacted with players. New assistant coach Keith Smart made an appearance and appeared to introduce himself to some of them. Bobby Jackson, Geoff Petrie and new assistant general manager Shareef Abdur-Rahim also observed action for a bit. Head Coach Paul Westphal was greeted lightheartedly by Cousins, who noticed Westphal had grown a beard during the lockout.
A few players organized some two-on-two action. In the first contest, Evans teamed with Whiteside against Thompson and Thomas. There was a funny exchange, which the Sacramento Bee’s Jason Jones tweeted about, involving Whiteside, who disputed a traveling violation called against him. (Sorry, I didn’t capture the moment on video.) In the second game, Cousins replaced Whiteside and paired with Evans against Thompson and Thomas.