Kings' depth impresses coach Abdelfattah
As the Sydney Kings prepare to chase a three-peat in NBL24, head coach Mahmoud Abdelfattah has revealed he could shake up the starting lineup as the campaign progresses.
The former G-League champion head coach is thrilled with the depth of talent at his disposal and says a rotating starting five could occur this season, a different take on the consistent five-man units we usually see from teams.
As he praised his full roster of eager Kings, Abdelfattah dropped the hint of treating the season with an NFL mindset, a strategy that will have the whole league watching.
“Going from game to game, coming from the States, I might be thinking about treating it like an NFL season and mix it up every game… I am very happy with the entire team,” Abdelfattah said.
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The Palestinian-American coach has made a name for himself this offseason, preaching that the well-being of his players will be key in their success.
“You will just have to make sure they are in a good place, physically, mentally and that they are enjoying every single day," he said.
“We are going to play fast and try to score a lot of points, but as long as you score more points than others, that is what matters most.”
The Kings won back-to-back championships under the leadership of former coach Chase Buford, and 2023 MVP Xavier Cooks, but both men have departed Sydney, with Cooks joining the Washington Wizards.
A different, but familiar Kings team, will showcase their new style this year, with former NBA player Denzel Valentine one of the offseason's biggest signings.
“Zel (Denzel Valentine) is an NBA talent; obviously, he is here for a year and then hoping to be back in the NBA, which I think he will be,” Abdelfattah said.
“I have had a previous relationship just knowing Denzel, from his Michigan State days… he is excited to be here [and] we have the same goals in life, so I am glad to have him.”
The Kings will first appear on court in NBL24 on Saturday, September 30 against their New South Wales rivals, the Illawarra Hawks. The game will be broadcast live and free on ESPN via Kayo Sports.