From complexion rosters, locations and monikers of teams, and the actual name of the league itself, the NBA G League stands at the top of the mountain when it comes to how quickly and frequent chance can actually occur. However, the Reno Bighorns have stood as one of the lone consistent fixtures in the G League as their location and team logo has pretty much stayed the same since they were established before the 2008-09 season.
However, that near-decade long reign will come to an end as the Sacramento Kings, the Bighorns’ NBA affiliate, plan move to Stockton, California for the 2018-19 G League season, pending league approval.
Within that press release, the team plans to play at Stockton Arena, a facility that hold up to 11,193 fans for basketball. That decision won’t become finalized until after voting form the Stockton City Council.
This relocation moves the Kings G League team just 45 minutes from their Sacramento offices and world-class Golden 1 Center that was opened back in fall 2016.
“It is my honor to welcome the Kings organization to Stockton and I look forward to watching NBA G League action at the Stockton Arena,” said Stockton Mayor Michael Tubbs. “The Kings have been known for their tremendous impact in the community and we’re excited to have their support as we continue to reinvent Stockton.”
The Kings moving their G League affiliate from Reno, Nevada to Stockton continues a recent trend of NBA teams moving their minor league squads closer to their home base. The relative closeness between G League and NBA teams has plenty of benefits. For one, young prospects or rehabbing vets can quickly move to the G League team to get additional practice or in-game reps. In addition to that, coaches on the NBA teams can easily make their way to the G League teams to get an in-person view prospects that are playing at that level. .
For Kings fans in Stockton, this move should be pretty awesome as they’ll be able to watch young prospects develop and grow in person before they’re ready to move up to Sacramento. Also the Bighorns are a well-run organization as head coach Darrick Martin led them to a 29-21 record, good enough for the 2nd seed in the Western Conference.
More important than that on-court success is how three members of the Kings G League squad were called up to the NBA —- Reggie Hearn to Detroit, David Stockton to Utah, and Aaron Harrison to Dallas. In addition to that trifecta, you can also look at two-way prospects Jack Cooley and JaKarr Sampson, who have been impressive in both the G League and with the Sacramento Kings.
“Our NBA G League team has been an incredible asset to help prepare players for NBA action and bringing the team closer to Sacramento will allow us to continue to build on that success and increase efficiency to this valuable development tool,” said Sacramento Kings General Manager Vlade Divac. “Kings fans in Stockton will now have an opportunity to see the next-generation of NBA players each week.”
At this point, the G League club’s General Manager Anthony McClish and the rest of the basketball operations staff will be located in Sacramento at the Sacramento Kings old training facility in Natomas, with access to the complete assets of the Sacramento Kings, including the Golden 1 Center. Headed by the team’s current VP of Business Operations Dustin Toms, the team’s business operations will be in offices location in Stockton,.
Last but not least, aspiring G Leagues will be able to participate for an opportunity to make that team in local tryouts that will take place during the summer.
For more updates on the exact date of those tryouts and whether that Bighorns name is going to remain or not, stay tuned to RidiculousUpside.com and follow @ridicupside on Twitter.