Kings News: Tyrese Haliburton talks trade six months later


February 8, 2022 will be a day Sacramento Kings fans will remember for many years to come. The day they traded Tyrese Haliburton and got Domantas Sabonis in return.

Whether or not Kings fans remember that day for good or bad is yet to be determined. Haliburton, however, has made it clear how he feels about last season’s deal.


In a recent interview with Basketball News’ Alex Kennedy, Haliburton spoke about his true thoughts and feelings before and after the deal was done.

“Before I got traded, I felt invincible,” Haliburton told Basketball News. “I was playing really well. Right before I got traded, I was 13 [points] and 17 [assists]. They kept bringing up trade rumors and I didn’t even bat an eyelid because I was like, ‘There’s no way they’re actually trading me.’ I was not worried. And I think that [trade] just made me think about having more self-awareness and realizing that I’m no bigger than the ultimate image.

Before Feb. 8, most people in the league would have laughed at the idea of ​​the Kings giving up Haliburton for anyone but Ben Simmons. There had been rumors for months that Sacramento was in the draw for Simmons and would drop Haliburton or De’Aaron Fox to do so.

During this part of the season, Fox had missed a lot of time for a number of reasons and was unfortunately very inconsistent when available. This led to Haliburton taking the reins and proving why he should be kept in place of Fox. And that’s exactly what he did:

  • February 5: 13 points, 17 assists, 6 rebounds
  • February 2: 12 points, 11 assists, 4 steals
  • Jan. 29: 38 points, 7 assists, 5-9 3PT
  • Jan. 22: 24 points, 12 assists, 6 rebounds, 5-8 3PT

An impressive run for a sophomore by any measure. Not only did he warn the rest of the league that he has what it takes to be an elite point guard and scorer, but he also won the hearts of many Fox fans.

However, the potential he showed in that run may have been what led the Indiana Pacers to want him in the end. Although a blockbuster trade involving Sacramento was something many in the NBA world had anticipated, the news still came as a shock to many. Especially Haliburton.

“I’m not going to lie – for a while it was just total resentment towards, honestly, everyone in the organization if I’m being frank enough, even people who had nothing to do with it. [the trade]Haliburton told Basketball News. “It was just resentment towards the organization as a whole. And it was so immature of me. It’s funny – the other day I was just writing some regrets that I have in my life, unfulfilled expectations and resentments, and the only resentment I could find in my life right now is the Sacramento Kings, and it’s like I don’t want to hang on to that.

Although he is now the centerpiece of a rebuilding franchise with a rich basketball history, the pain of being cut off by a place he called home still burns to this day.

It is well known that Haliburton had accepted Sacramento as the city in which he wanted to build his legacy. When most people think of the Kings, they think of a franchise that’s seemingly cursed to stay mediocre. Not Haliburton. He made it his goal to bring the Kings out of the shadows and back to what they were in the days of Chris Webber. Ironically, he was traded for a star forward with great passing ability like Webber.

Haliburton saw himself as the one who would change the identity of the Kings, and he was not wrong. He simply hadn’t anticipated his exile as a catalyst for this change.

For Haliburton, it will only be a matter of time before the feeling of betrayal he feels fades. However, only time will tell if the Kings will be grateful or regret not sticking with him.