Ever since Karl took the reins in February as the Sacramento Kings’ newest head coach, rumors of discord brewing between he and Cousins have littered the web. That chatter has been denied to no end, because, you know, that’s what happens. But, over the last few months, there has been enough smoke to suggest there is, or at one point was, some fire.
For that, Karl is sorry.
Speaking with CSN’s Kayte Christensen on media day, a conversation that, truthfully, seems to have been overlooked, Karl offered an apology of sorts for helping fuel speculation that alleged he wanted Cousins traded (via CSN Bay Area’s James Ham):
During media day, Karl opened up to CSN’s Kayte Christensen and addressed the situation directly. For the first time in public, Karl gave a mea culpa that went largely unnoticed.
“To be honest with you, I apologized to DeMarcus for making the trade comment that I’ve never coached a player that’s untradeable,” Karl told Christensen. “That was wrong for me to say, because you all (the media) took it and blew it up into crazy.”
“But it’s my responsibility to be smart enough to not say things like that,” Karl continued. “So I did apologize because I thought that was the only thing, maybe some other things, but really the only thing that got us separated was that comment that then everybody wrote the we’re going to trade [Cousins].”
Perhaps his “mea culpa” went basically unnoticed because it doesn’t feel genuine. Karl essentially blames the media for doing its job, and he closes by admitting he should probably be smart enough to know that the media is unforgiving.
Cool. Great. Grand. But the nature of his apology overlooks the scores of anonymous sources that founded various reports over the months. The general consensus didn’t comprise only random, scorching-hot takes. There were legitimate reporters, respected media members, using insider knowledge to deliver a succinct message: Things were not OK between Cousins and Karl.
Maybe everything is just dandy now. But the Kings haven’t been problem-free all along. The front office and roster upheaval implies the contrary. And while it’s good Karl apologized for his role in the Cousins debacle, the hint of deflection included in his recount of that apology underscores everything that’s wrong with the Kings: No one in Sacramento, at least for now, seems willing to assume sole responsibility for anything.