Will Buddy Hield Request for Trade After Being Benched by Sacramento Kings?

Published 02/13/2020, 8:35 AM EST


Sacramento Kings’ shooting guard Buddy Hield is unhappy with his role on the bench and may want out of Sacramento, according to The Athletic’s Shams Charania, Sam Amick and Jason Jones. Hield has come off the bench since Bogdan Bogdanović was swapped into the starting lineup on Jan. 24.

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The motivation for Hield to request a trade also branches from his frustration with coach Luke Walton, according to The Athletic. He has not held back in criticizing his head coach. This has been “problematic” in the eyes of general manager Vlade Divac.

Buddy Hield Unhappy With the Sacramento Kings

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When Buddy Hield was locked in a contract-extension standoff with the Kings, he hinted about leaving then said, “Name one big free agent that came to Sacramento.” The time when he played sparingly in crunch time, Hield brought up trust issues within the team.
Hield said, “That’s how Sacramento fans are.” when the Kings got booed at home,
Shams Charania, Sam Amick and Jason Jones of The Athletic reported:
“If Hield remains displeased with his role, a source with knowledge of his thinking said he might request a trade.”
That move worked in the short term. The Kings beat the Chicago Bulls that first night, and Hield dropped 21 points off the bench. Yet he hasn’t made his way back to the starting lineup since that Jan. 24 game, something that’s been extremely frustrating for the former Oklahoma standout.
He believes he is a starter in the NBA. He may also request a trade in the near future if he remains displeased with his role as a bench player.

Sacramento Kings Have a History of Issues

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Co-owner Vivek Ranadivé aired his feelings toward the situation in a text group chat that involved Walton, Divac and chief operating officer Matina Kolokotronis.
This isn’t the first time Hield has been upset this season, either. He appeared to slam coach Luke Walton in comments following their double-overtime loss to the Minnesota Timberwolves in December. It was a game in which he played just four minutes in the fourth quarter and only 71 seconds in the first overtime.
“Seems like we’re all over the place — coaches and everybody,” Hield said after that game. “Trust issues going on, I guess. Guys stop believing in players. It is what it is. They have who they have playing out there and I just have to be supportive.”

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After finishing with a 39-43 record under Dave Joerger last season, the Kings stand at 21-32 and 12th in the West entering Wednesday. They have lost a league-high eight games by three points or fewer.

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