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Season Review: De’Aaron Fox

De'Aaron Fox proved himself as a number one option this season.

As the Sacramento Kings opened the 2020-2021 NBA season, a flurry of storylines surrounded the team. Monte McNair was the newest candidate to try and fix the organization under embattled owner Vivek Ranadive, Luke Walton's tenure was very much in question, Marvin Bagley's potential was unknown and unrealized, and Tyrese Haliburton's upcoming rookie year was cause for celebration and excitement. Yet, beyond those narratives, there was one question that lingered throughout the fan base after De'Aaron Fox's standout bubble performance and subsequent maximum rookie-scale extension. Could De'Aaron step and be the guy for the Sacramento Kings?

From an offensive perspective, Fox mostly hit the mark. De'Aaron put up 25.2 points and 7.2 assists per game on the year, joining LeBron James, Damian Lillard, Luka Doncic, Nikola Jokic, and Trae Young as the only players to record those numbers this season. From a historical perspective, De'Aaron became the first player in the Sacramento era to finish with those averages, as well as only the fourth player in NBA history to put up 25 and 7 without making the All-Star Game. He was dominant as both a primary scoring option and as a distributor.

Perhaps nothing better demonstrates Fox's evolution as a bucket-getting machine than the comparison of his early-career scoring binges to this most recent season. Over his first 218 appearances in the league, De'Aaron scored 30 or more points just 10 times, or approximately once every 22 games. Over his final 43 games in 2020, he put up at least 30 points 18 times, or once every 2.4 games. From the beginning of March through the end of the regular season, Fox averaged 28.4 points, the fifth-highest mark in the NBA, behind Steph Curry, Bradley Beal, Donovan Mitchell, and Zion Williamson.

A large part of De'Aaron's increased scoring output found its genesis in late game opportunities, further demonstrating his realization as a number one option for this franchise. In 2018, Fox ranked 52nd in the league in fourth quarter scoring. Last year, he jumped all the way to 15th, while this season, De'Aaron finished fourth overall, trailing only Jayson Tatum, Giannis Antetokuonmpo, and James Harden - once again ranking right alongside the league's elite contributors.

Of course, a surge in scoring doesn't always equal measurable growth. Often, when a player experiences a significant jump in production, it's either due to a greater role within the offense or a bump in shooting efficiency. That wasn't the case for Fox. Rather, his increased scoring can be directly attributed to an increase in field goal attempts, a trend that could be concerning for many players, but not necessarily for Fox.

The reason for such a lack of concern is that Fox is already hyper-efficient in his primary scoring option: driving the ball. The Kings never needed him to shoot more effectively when he got into the paint, they just needed him to drive more often, and that he did. De'Aaron averaged the second-most attacks in the paint during the 2020 NBA season, 8.7 per game, while also recording the best field goal percentage at the rim among any guards at 68.9%. He was even more efficient in the paint than most big men, including Clint Capela, Karl-Anthony Towns, Julius Randle, Nikola Vucevic, and just about any other player in the league. And when Fox wasn't hitting layups, throwing down dunks, and finding teammates, he was forcing the other teams bigs into foul trouble, as he posted the second-highest foul drawing percentage among NBA guards, trailing only Ben Simmons. A legitimate argument can be made that 23-year old De'Aaron Fox was the best rim attacker in the league this past season.

While Fox's offensive attributes were on full display in 2020, the same cannot be said for his attention paid to the defensive end of the floor, and this is an area in which the Kings desperately need their budding star to step up. De'Aaron certainly wasn't the primary cause of Sacramento's dysfunctional and disappointing defensive performance, but he also rarely helped for more than a play or two per game, often disappearing for minutes on end on that side of the court. On the season, he posted below-average defensive field goal percentage differential for all field goal attempts and in three-point defense, and on an even more depressing note, the team was simply better with him on the bench when it came to slowing down opponents.

Sacramento's historically laughable defensive efforts have been well-documented throughout the season, with Marvin Bagley and Buddy Hield understandably taking the brunt of the blame, but De'Aaron perhaps coasted a bit on the laurels of his offensive brilliance. On the season, the team posted their worst defensive rating with him on the floor, 118, while they posted their best defensive rating with Fox out of the game at 111.6. Overall, the Kings allowed 6.4 more points per 100 possessions when De'Aaron was in the game, far worse than second-place Buddy Hield, who posted a differential of 2.9 points per 100 possessions. While it's true that De'Aaron's offensive load may never allow him to be the defender everyone wished for when he came into the league, he still must transform from a bad to at least an average defender if the Kings want to have any hope of holding each other accountable on that side of the floor.

When Vlade Divac drafted De'Aaron Fox four years ago, he was immediately named the organization's newest savior. Over his first three seasons, De'Aaron managed to show flashes and glimpses of that wished-for franchise centerpiece, but he rarely put it all together for more than a few games at a time. The questions surrounding his place as a number one option for this team were absolutely legitimate heading into the year, but he answered those questions emphatically over the last few months. De'Aaron was by no means perfect, and there is plenty of work left to be done for the 23-year old, but his development as a primary scorer and initiator for a team desperately in need of a go-to option more than proved his reputation as the cornerstone of the Sacramento Kings.

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aplumley
June 8, 2021 12:56 pm

At 23, he’s still got some growth left in him. He looks to be an absolute stud. The Kings need some 3-D players and rim protection more than anything. Let’s hope we get it and don’t waste what looks like a brilliant draft pick.

andy_sims
June 8, 2021 1:11 pm
Reply to  aplumley

At the moment, Wright & Davis fit the bill nicely. I’d include Mo, but I don’t really expect him to be around in the fall. Jones & Metu seem to have some real ability to protect the rim, but neither is a viable starter at the moment, and may never be.

Hamlet1989
June 9, 2021 7:04 am
Reply to  aplumley

Moody is the Quintessential 3&D player. Shoots from anywhere, doesn’t need the ball. Can guard 1-5.

Last edited 9 days ago by Hamlet1989
Kosta
June 8, 2021 1:08 pm

De’Aaron put up 25.2 points and 7.2 assists per game on the year, joining LeBron James, Damian Lillard, Luka Doncic, Nikola Jokic, and Trae Young as the only players to record those numbers this season.

Damn, would’ve been nice to have Fox plus Luka or Trae (and going way back, Damian Lillard) on our team together!

TheGrantNapear
June 8, 2021 3:52 pm
Reply to  Kosta

Or Fox and MPJ. Heck we could’ve had Fox And D. Mitchell. Instead we ended up Justin Jackson and Giles lol.

BestHyperboleEver
June 8, 2021 5:59 pm
Reply to  TheGrantNapear

For better or worse, my receipt says Isaac and Mitchell. If Isaac could stay healthy for 20 games in a row I’d feel a lot better about that receipt.

Kingsguru21
June 9, 2021 1:00 pm

Using hindsight, I wish the Kings had taken Fox, Adebayo and Doncic. Using that criteria, alot of people would see that differently.

And so it goes….

BestHyperboleEver
June 9, 2021 3:20 pm
Reply to  Kingsguru21

Well, yeah, if we’re going full hindsight (but not using it to manipulate pick position), I’d go with Adebayo and Mitchell. I don’t think hindsight is necessarily for the Doncic pick. Just nearly anyone other than Vlade in the driver’s seat.

andy_sims
June 8, 2021 1:09 pm

With an increased offensive workload, some slacking off on the other end could be justifiable, but not to the current degree, and not with this roster.

And it’s true, when Fox decides to lock someone down, he has all of the tools to do it. I saw him absolutely frustrate the hell out of Westbrook on a few occasions, and literally take the ball from Morant by getting to where Ja wanted to go more quickly than expected.

Fox doesn’t need to be the team’s best defender, but even if he starts putting up 35 & 12 per game, he still can’t be the worst. I think that with a coach who had a defensive philosophy…

BLAH BLAH BLAH

RikSmits
June 8, 2021 1:31 pm

It takes time to build as a team, as players, as a coach, as a GM, but with us sticking together like we said, if you cut those nine-game losing streaks into 3-6, or hell, even 2-7, you know we’re in an entirely different position and that’s already being built upon from where we were last year to where we are this year.

I have been thinking a lot about this statement by Fox. Is he really saying that if they’d gone 2-7 on both these 9 game losing streaks that they’d stumble into the play-in and he calls that success, or an entirely different position?
Has he really bought into that low bar for success that the franchise is trying to sell us fans?

Can you imagine guys like LBJ or Curry or CP3 say, “yeah if we’d have gone 2-7 instead of on two 9 game losing streaks we’d have been fine”? I can’t.

Also, when you look at his advanced stats, there’s improvement in just a few areas (TS%, lower TO%), but most areas these stats declined or stayed similar. Not only compared to last year, but also two years ago.

Reb%, AST%, ST%, BLK%, WS, BPR, VORP. All down compared to last year and/or two years ago. And his TS%, even after it went up, is not really good.

Does he make the players around him better? Does he have a good feel of the flow of the game and the tempo and what decisions to make? Can he be focused and have intensity for a full season? Is he a leader? Can he carry the franchise to the next level? I have my doubts.

He needs to make another jump; one that really shows up in the (advanced) stats.

SahanSah
June 8, 2021 2:05 pm
Reply to  RikSmits

Some of those are team oriented statistics. Two seasons ago the team and head coach were simply better. AST% is slightly down because he’s scoring more often, and doing so more efficiently as you stated. Our offense is effective enough, so not sure why you’re nitpicking. Like REB%? Really? Highlighting those margins, then dismissing more important categories in TS and TOs…odd.

His finishing at the rim and 4th quarter scoring have ascended to elite levels. Of course a player of his caliber makes those around him better. That combination of scoring and playmaking is plainly helpful, as we’ve seen the offense with Fox off the floor. He’s been accepted as the leader. Dude just needs another star, as does every other great player in the league. If not, least needs a deep team…one that doesn’t fall off a cliff when he hits the bench.

Tough to carry a franchise with no other star, no depth, and poor coaching. Especially at 6’3″

BestHyperboleEver
June 8, 2021 2:31 pm
Reply to  SahanSah

then dismissing more important categories in TS and TOs…odd.

His TS% is mediocre at best for a #1 option. His TOs are fine. They’ve been remarkably consistent at a perfectly acceptable level since he entered the league, really. Not great. Not bad considering his USG and role.

If not, least needs a deep team…one that doesn’t fall off a cliff when he hits the bench.

Oddly enough, according to his ON/OFF, the team was better overall when he was on the bench.

Now, I’m not actually saying the team is better off without him, but that’s what happens when you’re a high USG/bad-to-mediocre efficiency scorer and a poor team defender.

Ultimately, IMO, unless he’s able to push his TS% closer to the 59+% range (which he may do!) Fox won’t need a Robin. He’ll need a Batman. And probably a Batgirl too.

Last edited 10 days ago by BestHyperboleEver
TheKingsGuard
June 8, 2021 2:07 pm
Reply to  RikSmits

Absolutely crazy statement, but I wouldn’t put much weight into a response to a question asked at end of year presser. I’m more concerned about his all around game vs just an uptick in scoring. I’m a huge Fox fan. I ask would other teams want Fox on his contract? The answer in my mind is a resounding yes. That doesn’t mean he’s a hall of famer, but something to build on or that can make the team better via trade down the road.

Last edited 10 days ago by TheKingsGuard
RikSmits
June 8, 2021 10:03 pm
Reply to  TheKingsGuard

I do put weight into it; either this is a rehearsed comment and I doubt anyone would think that would be a good response, or he said something that he actually feels/believes. You don’t make this stuff up while it goes contrary to how you think. No way.

LandParkJimmer
June 8, 2021 2:54 pm
Reply to  RikSmits

He’s more concerned with Call of Duty than improving his defense. A terrible mentality – seems like he doesn’t mind losing. We were worse this year IMO.

TheGrantNapear
June 8, 2021 3:55 pm
Reply to  LandParkJimmer

He had a snarky tweet as I recall when the Grizz were still in the playoffs and it was indirectly tied to Morant and the criticism Fox has received when the two are compared. He needs to grow as a leader. Plain and simple.

Otis
June 8, 2021 4:00 pm
Reply to  TheGrantNapear

It would have been refreshing to see all these guys (McNair/Walton/Fox, etc.) talk about how this season’s performance was unacceptable rather than the “we’re heading in the right direction” stuff we did get. They were selling the idea that this season was a success.

I think Fox’s support of Walton worried me as much as his on-court development. He didn’t need to throw the guy under the bus, but could easily have said something like “we all need to be much better”.

LandParkJimmer
June 8, 2021 4:37 pm
Reply to  Otis

Amen

andy_sims
June 8, 2021 5:12 pm
Reply to  Otis

Agreed. Every interview I’ve watched or read with Fox tells me that he’s a bright young man, and seems to have a pretty amazing ability to recall specific plays from games that happened months ago. He seems to have a big-picture kind of mind.

How he reconciles that with wanting to keep Walton around is baffling.

rockbottom
June 8, 2021 5:15 pm
Reply to  andy_sims

Like have a substitute teacher let you do what you want with no accountability !

andy_sims
June 9, 2021 9:46 am
Reply to  rockbottom

I’ve had that exact same thought, and I’ve been unable to reconcile it with my feeling that Fox wants to be great, and knows he’s got to get his team to the playoffs in order to be in that conversation.

RikSmits
June 8, 2021 10:04 pm
Reply to  Otis

Bingo.

TheGrantNapear
June 8, 2021 3:53 pm
Reply to  RikSmits

Agree with this. There’s still a ton of improvement that needs to happen on and off the court. Leadership matters. See Ja Morant.

RandyBreuersNeckHair
June 8, 2021 1:34 pm

De’Aaron Fox proved himself as a number one option *on a 31-win team* this season.

What’s the Jerry Reynolds saying? Every bad team has a leading scorer?

BestHyperboleEver
June 8, 2021 2:27 pm

This exactly.

He proved himself on as a number 1 option the same way Collin Sexton did. Does anybody think Collin Sexton is a candidate to be a #1 option on a good team? Any conversation that talks about PPG without talking about TS% is borderline pointless. Of the 31 players scored 20+ pts per game this season, he was 26th in efficiency. Exactly zero of the players below him were on winning teams this season. Of the 16 players with 30+ USG, he’s 15th in scoring efficiency. Above only Westbrook.

Fox is good and on a good trajectory, but I think we’re getting well ahead of ourselves if we think he’s presently good enough to be a #1 option on a decent team. Which, to me, is what it would mean to “prove himself as a #1 option.” Because proving you can be the #1 option on a bad team is meaningless.

BasketballHella
June 8, 2021 10:37 pm

Also agree. Played a game with some friends the other night. Look thru the entire NBA rosters and honestly rank where fox would be on those teams exactly as they are built.

BeTheBall
June 8, 2021 2:03 pm

It was good to see the growth in some of his areas, however he’s still got a lot of work cut out for him at the line and on D. If he’s going to evolve into more of a driver and less of a shooter, then he simply has to make his free throws at a better rate. Because he’s going to see a lot of them.

That said, we’re still going to need somebody to be the team’s leader and Batman to Fox’s Robin, though.

Adamsite
Nostradumbass 14
Nostradumbass 14
June 8, 2021 2:08 pm

He is not an all-star yet, but if Fox is to continue to grow as a player he is going to need better talent around him. He strikes me as one of those “sum is greater than their parts” type players, meaning if the talent around his better, his skillset will make those around him better and help Fox to take the next step. Until that happens we will have a few more 25 PPG and 7 assist seasons with Fox while the Kings still win between 30-40 games. Give him some help and we may see Trae Young type numbers of around 29 and 9, including some all-star games.

I am of the mind that letting Bogi go for nothing the Kings very likely missed out on the play-in tourny and cost Fox a possible all-star selection. Bogi was exactly the kind of talent you want around Fox to help spread the floor, handle the ball, and bring high IQ to the court. Sure, Hali brought that, but just imagine having Fox, Hali, and Bogi on the floor at the same time.

Monte had better not screw up this offseason, because I don’t know how long Fox wll want to stick around. Get him the help he needs and I think we see another major jump in him as a player.

Otis
June 8, 2021 3:47 pm
Reply to  Adamsite

I’d like to see him more off-ball next season with Hali running the offense. This Doug Christie idea of him penetrating the lane every possession is a long-term recipe for disaster, and it’s not going to make him give any additional effort on defense.

andy_sims
June 8, 2021 4:14 pm
Reply to  Otis

As long as Fox can get to the rim with such relative ease, he should be taking all of the high-percentage gimmes that he can. He’s put on a good bit of muscle, and has really improved scoring through contact. It’s not as if we haven’t seen enough non-contact injuries to know that getting injured can happen under almost any circumstance.

And I also would like to see Fox share the point duties while he’s in with Haliburton. Tyrese clearly has what it takes to run an offense, and I’ve not gotten the impression that Fox takes issue with being off the ball. People can barely defend him with the ball, it can’t be a lot of fun trying to try denying him the ball. Just a ton of potential to be a terrific back court.

Otis
June 8, 2021 4:20 pm
Reply to  andy_sims

I’m not sure those are necessarily gimmies, if they are occurring in the half court. There’s the effort expense, the constant contact (which, as you noted, could be addressed somewhat by changing his body), and the fact that good NBA defenses can put the brakes on one-dimensional offenses.

I mean, a lot of the chatter on this site during the season was about the burden Fox was physically experiencing by having to carry these other talentless chuds every night.

Just another reason for him to develop his three point shot AND his free throw stroke.

NorCalKingsFan
June 9, 2021 8:30 pm
Reply to  Otis

His FT stroke improved a lot, he looks comfortable now.

LandParkJimmer
June 8, 2021 2:55 pm

His offense is fine, his defense is a different story. I would be fine trading him if the return was good – I don’t think he cares enough about winning to take this team to the next level.

Rosevillain
June 8, 2021 3:38 pm

I would’ve called you crazy if you told me Trae Young was going to be a better player than De’Aaron Fox, but here we are. Maybe player development and decent coaching actually do matter, eh Vivek? Oh well, what’s another year?

TheGrantNapear
June 8, 2021 3:50 pm
Reply to  Rosevillain

I agree, right now Young is the better player. Young certainly has more talent around him as well.

LandParkJimmer
June 8, 2021 4:39 pm
Reply to  TheGrantNapear

I hate to agree but Young is better than Fox. His supporting cast is better but not much.

1951
June 8, 2021 4:52 pm
Reply to  LandParkJimmer

It’s not like Fox has ever had a second best player as good as … [checks notes] … Bogdan Bogdanović!

Kingsguru21
June 9, 2021 11:01 am
Reply to  1951

Bogdan is not the 2nd best player on the Hawks. Capela is.

BestHyperboleEver
June 8, 2021 5:53 pm
Reply to  Rosevillain

I don’t know about crazy, but I certainly expected Trae to be better than Fox. Even in college his creation, passing, shooting gravity and ability to draw fouls were all translatable skills. I had him ranked 3rd in that draft (behind Donic and JJJ) and talked a lot about the idea of drafting Young (before we jumped in the lottery) and them exploring the possibility of trading Fox if need be.

reydarly
June 8, 2021 3:56 pm

This fanbase is so salty. We want our own Ja Morant, Trae Young, Luka Doncic, etc. If we had them we wouldn’t be crying about their bad defense or would we? We don’t take into account that they have better coaching and teammates that can cover those weaknesses to a degree. They don’t often share the court with two players beside them that are just as big if not bigger of a defensive liability than they can be. All three of them play on teams I would say we are competitive talent wise with. All three of their teams made the playoffs this year. It seems like we are desperate for a player to just save this franchise from itself and do everything. Good luck doing that with the many contradicting voices in our front office. We had a chance to draft Luka and have that guy. The front office got in the way. We need to go at them more than the players at this point. How many teams have gone from good, to bad and back to good the past 15 years? Just about every team in the league besides us peaked, fell off, and resurged to playoff contention during this drought.

andy_sims
June 8, 2021 4:31 pm
Reply to  reydarly

There’s also the very real issue of playing solid defense being contagious. Fox has the tools, and I think that Haliburton will do what it takes to become a plus defender. Wright and Davis certainly showed that they can be pests defensively, and I’m looking forward to seeing how things go when Fox is on the floor with one or both of them, assuming that Davis stays.

Even adding one excellent defender into the mix could have a multiplier effect on the team’s defense as a whole. Ideally, someone at the 4/5 who’s comfortable with keeping his teammates focused at that end. Hell, even Buddy was making a decent effort on defense over the last part of the season after trades. We gave up a couple of terrible defenders and got back three pretty good ones, including Mo. I have no idea how important that was to McNair in making those moves, but if it continues, they may even become respectable on that end. The Kings showed a lot more defensive effort, although the consistency of that effort was not always great.

Last edited 10 days ago by andy_sims
Otis
June 8, 2021 5:02 pm
Reply to  andy_sims

For sure, and a better scheme wouldn’t hurt either.

andy_sims
June 8, 2021 5:14 pm
Reply to  Otis

Luke Walton doesn’t do “schemes,” man.

BestHyperboleEver
June 8, 2021 5:58 pm
Reply to  andy_sims

We always say Fox has all the tools to be a great defender but, really, what defensive tool does he have beyond his athleticism?

andy_sims
June 9, 2021 9:50 am

With the caveat that I’m assuming that you don’t think that Fox is too dumb or lazy to be a good defender, what other tools are there besides athleticism & physique?

BestHyperboleEver
June 9, 2021 10:34 am
Reply to  andy_sims

I’m not sure what you mean by “too dumb.” I think Fox is highly intelligent. But yes, his physique & physicality are issues, and he hasn’t shown high level defensive awareness or much development in understanding how to defend NBA offenses. So, if we were to break “the defensive tools” down into (over)simplified categories and rank where Fox stands in each from 1 (disastrous) to 10 (elite), it would probably look something like this for me:

  1. Functional athleticism – 10
  2. Frame – 5
  3. Physicality – 3
  4. Motor/effort level – 5
  5. Awareness (Defensive BBIQ. Anticipating and reacting appropriately) – 4
  6. Technical execution (Individual & Team) – 3
  7. Understanding (of team system/defensive goals and the opponents offensive system/goals) – 4

Which, and I swear this wasn’t planned, averages out to, well, average. Which I think is about right. I think ultimately Fox will become an average to a bit above average defensive player in a few years when he has more experience and has added strength at least to the point where opposing guards can’t just bully him to get to their spots.

So, I don’t know. Maybe we agree. Maybe he has “all the tools.” I would just finish that sentence with “… to become a totally okay defender.”

andy_sims
June 9, 2021 10:53 am

Good breakdown, even if I don’t agree with all of the grades. For example, he was 12th in the NBA in steals per game, which ought to add to his number at 4, 5, & 7. Possibly also at 6, but I’m not adequately equipped to analyze the info there in order to offer anything other than a wild guess.

BestHyperboleEver
June 9, 2021 11:29 am
Reply to  andy_sims

His steals could certainly add to those numbers. And playing the passing lanes and, my favorite part, working as a weakside shot blocking ninja, are really his greatest strengths as a defender. But they can also be misleading in terms of their impact on overall contribution to the defense. Obviously, the plays where he got the steals are great. But how many times was he missing rotations and close-outs or caught out of position looking for a steal? It’s similar to a guy that grabs a ton of rebounds, but does it by refusing to step away from the basket to close-out on shooters/show on screens/etc. Are those rebounds more valuable than the __ extra uncontested shots you’re giving up? I’m not saying there’s a definitive answer here and if there is I certainly don’t know what it is. But we see too many guys with good steal numbers on bad defenses for me to think it’s a strong measure of their overall ability to contribute positively to good defense.

All that said, like I mentioned. I think Fox will be fine on defense eventually. Perhaps even better than that if they can acquire the type of defenders around him that would really free him up to play free safety like Rondo could thank to Perkins/Garnett, or Iverson could thanks to being surrounded by good help defenders and rim-protectors.

oshima9
June 9, 2021 11:36 am

Fox has had several years to show improvement on defense, and hasn’t. I think what we see is what we can expect to get over the rest of his career, with some possible marginal improvements.

rockbottom
June 8, 2021 5:20 pm
Reply to  reydarly

Talent at Dallas ends with Luka and Carlisle !

Otis
June 8, 2021 6:52 pm
Reply to  rockbottom

And Carlisle is getting by a bit on reputation these days, IMO.

TheGrantNapear
June 8, 2021 3:58 pm

BabyG, you seem to be bullish on trading for KP over on Twitter. Please explain. Most of the commenters including myself want nothing to do with KP and his contract.

andy_sims
June 8, 2021 4:39 pm
Reply to  TheGrantNapear

I don’t want his contract or his legs. This graphic ought to scare straight even the most ardent KP stans.

sdfhsrh.png
TheGrantNapear
June 8, 2021 5:31 pm
Reply to  andy_sims

Chronically injured bigs at KP’s height and taller tend to stay chronically injured bigs, they don’t miraculously become healthy. Couple that with that albatross of a contract, I just don’t understand BabyG’s desire to trade for him.

andy_sims
June 9, 2021 9:56 am
Reply to  TheGrantNapear

Humans just weren’t meant to be that big. It magnifies the amount of stress being put on knees and ankles when you have so much mass above them.

When I was a kid, there was a very promising outfielder for the Reds called Tracy Jones, I think. Speedy, great arm, the ball jumped off of his bat, but then he put on 25-30 pounds of muscle, and began having injury after injury. The sad thing with KP is that none of this is even attributable to having too much muscle. He’s just too damned tall.

1951
June 8, 2021 4:05 pm

So, you are saying his trade value has never been higher?
comment image

😉

Last edited 10 days ago by 1951
Klam
Nostradumbass 18
Nostradumbass 19
Nostradumbass 18
Nostradumbass 19
June 8, 2021 5:42 pm
Reply to  1951

comment image

BabalooMagoo
June 8, 2021 4:48 pm

His offense is fine, his defense can improve, his FT % needs to improve (although late in the season it seemed to go up a bit). Grade: A

1951
June 8, 2021 4:57 pm

I can’t tell who got robbed more, De’Aaron Fox or Tyrese Haliburton?

andy_sims
June 8, 2021 5:16 pm
Reply to  1951

That all seems pretty reasonable, factoring in missed games and whatnot.

If you want to see robbed, wait until ROY gets announced.

rockbottom
June 8, 2021 5:31 pm

Fox seems a major offensive player that will likely improve in most areas ! The problem going forward is a legit effort on D and being a true team leader ! Seems lacking in both areas and may explain how the team can win just as much without him ! Next season should answer my concerns and hopefully for the better ! If not that 30+ million per may taste a bit sour !

oshima9
June 8, 2021 6:20 pm

I see Fox as a player who has found his sweet spot, and isn’t sufficiently motivated for the team to do better. He’s happy with Walton, and says that he should be kept, because Walton centers the offense around him. Walton doesn’t demand better defense from the team, but he doesn’t demand it from Fox, either. So, Fox gets to score a lot and get paid a lot for it, while the team flounders in mediocrity.

I think we may be worrying unnecessarily about Fox leaving if the team doesn’t improve. Why would he leave? He’s treated like an All-Star by the local media and the fan base without actually having to play like one. He’s a PG scorer who doesn’t defend, doesn’t shoot the 3 well and doesn’t make his teammates better while he’s on the floor. Other NBA teams would worry about this, but, in Sacramento, where we are starved for stars, we hope that some day, he will start playing defense with consistency and showing leadership skills, despite any significant progress with either to date.

Adamsite
Nostradumbass 14
Nostradumbass 14
June 8, 2021 8:03 pm
Reply to  oshima9

So is that the big fish in a small pond point of view?

oshima9
June 9, 2021 11:38 am
Reply to  Adamsite

Sort of, except that there are big fish in small NBA ponds who have played defense and more team oriented basketball. See players that have gone through Utah, Indiana and San Antonio, for example.

Others here say that Fox needs someone to push him. Maybe so.

RikSmits
June 8, 2021 10:14 pm
Reply to  oshima9

I fear you may have hit the nail on the head. This really ties in with my comment about the 9 game losing streaks.

I like the guy and I totally understand him, if that is the case. But is that the type of player you want to lead this franchise?

Mike120
June 8, 2021 7:56 pm

Total thread Jack: I find it interesting that (I think) 5 of the remaining 8 playoff teams have never won a championship: ATL, PHX, LAC, UTA, DEN. DAL has one 10 years ago, PHI was in ‘83 I think and Milwaukee had a couple in the early 70’s.

Last edited 10 days ago by Mike120
Mike120
June 8, 2021 9:03 pm
Reply to  Mike120

Make that 6 teams with BKN. And DAL is out of it now. MIL looking like it won’t advance. Pretty good chance there is a first time NBA champion this year.

Kingsguru21
June 9, 2021 12:53 am
Reply to  Mike120

Milwaukee made the Finals in ’74 but lost to Boston. Those were Oscar Robertson’s final NBA games.

Milwaukee won their only title with the Big O in 1971 and B-Ref tells me some dude named Kareem Abdul Jabbar. Not sure if Kareem was any good, though.

Last edited 10 days ago by Kingsguru21
BasketballHella
June 8, 2021 10:32 pm

Just my two cents and it’s been mentioned in some of the other comments but here it is.

I love fox think he’s a good guy and a great basketball player with an immense amount of talent.

But…… I know it was just an “end of the year presser” but that comment about 2-7 vs 0-9 making a difference is really really rubbing me the wrong way. Like very very wrong way.

Hear me out here, he says a lot of the “right” stuff about wouldn’t it be great if and when these future successes happen. But that shows me a complete lack of understanding of what it’s gonna take from him personally, to get over that hump.

This is a franchise that doesn’t even mess with the normal cliches in press conferences anymore. When is the last time you’ve heard someone mention a championship in a presser that wasn’t a) brand fucking new here or, b) a certain dismissive little chap throwing shakas for the camera.

This city hasn’t hasn’t seen a kings team finish above .500 in 15 fucking years let alone playoffs. But then when we almost make the gimmick year where they let 10 in they still shit the bed and can’t do it. I know he wasn’t playing that game but then he comes with that end of year presser a week later. It showed me something that makes me like fox less. It shows me that the rumblings about him not being a leader and not having that killer instinct that we need is true.

In summation fox is an amazingly talented player who has never once made a teammate better or risen to the level of what’s needed for us to get back to the playoffs. He has gotten better statistically on offense but that hasn’t translated to wins. He’s getting paid like an all star but isn’t close to actually being one. He was the best offensive talent that was also the same team who was the worst defense in the history of the league. He scored over 40 points 3 times this season. They were 1-2 in those games.

Last edited 10 days ago by BasketballHella
WizsSox
June 9, 2021 11:04 am

Seems like quite the small sample size cherry pick on the 40+ to try and prove some mythical point…They were 5-2 in games where he scored 36+. 9-9 when he scored 30+.

15-25 record when he scored less than 30. Seems like him scoring and being efficient is conducive to more wins, at least with the current make up of the team.

Last edited 9 days ago by WizsSox
BasketballHella
June 10, 2021 5:45 am
Reply to  WizsSox

And still out of the playoffs with all those other wins.

My mythical point is that big showy “all star” numbers with no success doesn’t mean anything. We had an actual All star once named cousins we still didn’t do shit.

Haliburton as a rookie showed more drive killer instinct and moved the needle more than fox has since he’s been here. He also made his teammates better as well. Something fox also hasn’t done.

like I said like the guy and like his talent he’s just not the guy here and won’t be the guy. We clearly don’t have that level of player yet as this team is currently built.

oshima9
June 9, 2021 11:49 am

I agree with this. Fox is a talented, likeable player without the self-awareness and competitive drive required to lead an NBA playoff team.

KingsFanKrish
June 11, 2021 8:06 am

Fox is a stud but he has to commit himself to defense. I thought he got a pass on defense from the media and fanbase. He is equally as bad as Bagley and Buddy. It was not a surprise to see the Kings’ defense improve dramatically when Fox sat out at the end of the year. He has the power alone to get the Kings to the playoffs by becoming an elite 2-way player. He sets the tone. He has the ability to do it. It’s all about mindset and if he will accept the challenge and burden of leadership. Defense is as much about heart as anything else.

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