(photo credit: REUTERS)
For the fourth time in the past seven games, Omri Casspi never left the
Sacramento Kings’ bench on Sunday night, watching from the sideline as his team
claimed a 106-97 home victory over the Utah Jazz.
The 22-year-old Israeli
forward has experienced an erratic sophomore season in the NBA under the
guidance of fickle coach Paul Westphal. After playing a total of just 27 minutes
in Sacramento’s last seven games, Casspi has revealed that he would like to
leave the Kings for a team that would truly appreciate him.
easy for me to sit on the bench, which has happened to me quite a bit in
Sacramento’s last few games,” Casspi wrote in a column published on Israeli
sports website ONE.
“I’m a player who lives the game and as soon as you
take away the thing I love the most in the world – playing basketball, it is
hard for me.
“The situation in Sacramento is not like it used to be in
the past. Coach Paul Westphal is experimenting and trying different things and
I’m certainly not in his plans. We have six more games until the end of the
season, and although I won’t say that I’m counting the seconds, it is clear to
me that I will have to make some decisions at the end of the
Casspi, who has averaged 8.8 points and 4.4 rebounds in 69 games
so far this season, claimed that there is plenty of interest in his services
from other teams in the league.
“I know that there are many teams,
including some playoff teams, that want me ahead of next season,” he wrote. “I
hope to find myself in a team that appreciates me as a player and a person, a
team that plays like a team.
“I still don’t know if I will definitely not
be continuing with the Kings. I’ve got a contract and love the fans, the city,
the owner and the general manager.
"But things haven’t worked out and that
"Sacramento is the team that gave me the chance to play in
the NBA so it would be egotistical of me to say I want to leave, but I’m certain
that I’m good enough to play, whether it is for the Kings or another
“Clearly the current situation is not ideal for the team and for
me. There are other teams which suit me better and since I have an excellent
relationship with the players and the staff, I hope that they appreciate me
enough to let me leave for a place where I can play basketball.”