As the Sacramento Kings were enduring their worst season in franchise history, I turned some of my attention to the rest of the NBA for an actual display of exciting basketball. While watching the Bulls battle the Celtics in arguably the greatest playoff series of all-time, I couldn't help but be jealous of how one man by the name of Derek Rose could turn a team in the cellar of the Eastern Conference into a great team, in ONE season. About half of the teams that made the playoffs last year were led by their young franchise player acquired in the draft, including Deron Williams' Jazz, Lebron James' Cavs, Dwayne Wade's Heat, Dwight Howard's Magic, and Chris Paul's Hornets. I remember questioning my brother, "Why couldn't the Kings have a franchise player like that? If we ever get one, how many more seasons of terrible Basketball would I have to stomache before we had a player that would bring back Arco thunder?" Well thanks to Geoff Petrie's genius, he found that player with the 4th pick in this years draft. It's tough to figure this guy out. He's not extremely fast. He's not super athletic. He's not an amazing shooter. He's not an exceptional passer. But he IS an amazing basketball player and the savior Sacramento has been waiting for. I am going to analyze why Tyreke Evans is the face and the future of the Sacramento Kings.
Taking a look at his stats blows me away. He is averaging 20 points, 5 assists, and 5 rebounds per game. Only four other players in the history of the league has accomplished this same feat as a rookie: Lebron James, Michael Jordan, Oscar Robertson, and Grant Hill. The scary part is that he is only going to get better. In high school, he averaged 34 points per game, but the majority of his points came from jumpshots, but when he got to Memphis, Coach Calipari forced Tyreke to use his body and get to the basket. So far through the season, he tends to get most of his points in the lane, but he once had a great perimeter jumpshot, he just needs to utilize it and he will be unstoppable to guard.
Tyreke brings more than stats to this team, he brings hustle, emotion, chemisty, leadership, and swagger that cannot be measured by numbers. Every play you know that #13 is on the floor and giving it one hundred percent, and his team follows with the same amount of effort. As you watch this video of Tyreke spitting a freestyle, you see the off the court chemistry that tanslates on the court with his leadership.
In short, thank heavens for Tyreke Evans. Even when the world and David Stern was against us, we still got the best player in the draft with the #4 pick. Tyreke Evans is the future of Sacramento and if you don't like that, you don't like Kings Basketball!