I spent some time in Sacramento this summer and I have to wonder: what does Tyreke Evans do for fun there? I’m not hating on the capital city, but he’s the 2009-10 Rookie of the Year! He’s only the 4th player in NBA history to average 20/5/5 as a rookie! What can he possibly do for fun in a city like Sacramento?! Oh, right, you can race on the highway at over 120 miles per hour. Or you could go golfing, I suppose. I’m not one to tell people how to spend their free time, but what if Evans worked on his 3-point shot and was able to make 1.5 per game next year? Or what about shooting free throws until he was able to make over 80% of them? If both of those things were to happen we would have to move him into the first round, without a doubt. Right now, though, he’s being drafted late in the first round yet his game is probably closer to a late-2nd, early-3rd rounders. It’s possible that Evans could become the next Dwyane Wade, as we’ve heard him compared to, but he’s going to have to fill those holes in his game if he wants to get some first-round love from me.
Painting seems like a more constructive way to spend your free time in the offseason, Tyreke.
Ladies and gentlemen, the starting point guard for your Sacramento Kings: Beno Udrih. Read it again! Mr. Udrih (spoken in the key of Arrested Development’s ‘Mr. Wendal‘) is actually a nice late-round fantasy option. He had a fine season last year as Evans’ running mate, scoring a career-best 13 ppg, dishing 4.7 assists, making 1.1 threes, and stealing 1.0 balls per game. Maybe the best part of his game, though, was the fact that he shot the ball at nearly 50% from the floor (49.7% on 10.5 attempts). He’s not the kind of point guard you want leading your fantasy squad, but if you’re in need of assists in the 10th round or desperate to add some steals and threes, then there’s probably not much better left on the board than Mr. Udrih.
Jason Thompson is having a rough offseason. The Kings got rid of Spencer Hawes, much to Thompson’s delight, yet wound up bringing in Samuel Dalembert, who will start at center for the Kings. They then went and drafted another big man, a cornerstone big, if you will, in DeMarcus Cousins. Thompson has watched his minutes quickly disappear with the acquisitions the Kings made this summer. I for one have always liked Thompson and thought that if he could just add a little toughness on the defensive side of the ball he could be a nice fantasy big (with playing time, of course). But it looks like he’s not going to get significant minutes in Sac-Town. Barring an injury or an extremely slow start by Cousins, Thompson will likely see fewer than 20 minutes per game. That’s something we as fantasy hoopsters can’t have in our lineups.
There’s no denying that Dalembert is one of the few big men in the league who can go off on a given night for 20 rebounds and 5 blocks, and then turn around and put up 3 boards and zero blocks in the following night. Such is the life of being a Dalembert owner. In the end, though, he’s usually good for 9-10 rebounds and 2 blocks per game. Another benefit to drafting Dalembert in the late rounds is that you’re getting a center who has not missed a game in over four seasons. Carl Landry is one of the least sexy picks you can make on draft day, yet he is about as solid as they come. Landry can add points, boards, blocks, steals, and shoot the ball in the high 50’s from the field and low 80’s from the free-throw line. He’s a nice pick in the middle rounds. Your guess is as good as mine when it comes to trying to put numbers to Cousins’ game. He could average a double-double and block 2 shots per game, or he could take time to develop. I think a 9th or 10th round pick is where you want to find out. The Kings also have a number of wings with potential — Omri Casspi, Donte Greene, and Francisco Garcia. The problem is, playing time is limited. Subbing in for Landry and Evans won’t get you much quality PT.
PG: Beno Udrih, Pooh Jeter
SG: Tyreke Evans, Donte Greene
SF: Francisco Garcia, Omri Casspi
PF: Carl Landry, Jason Thompson
C: Samuel Dalembert, DeMarcus Cousins
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