KANSAS CITY, MO - MARCH 11: Alec Burks #10 of the Colorado Buffaloes drives with the ball against the Kansas Jayhawks during their semifinal game in the 2011 Phillips 66 Big 12 Men's Basketball Tournament at Sprint Center on March 11, 2011 in Kansas City, Missouri. (Photo by Jamie Squire/Getty Images)
In a word, to answer that question in the headline: no.
But the Sacramento Kings obviously see something in Alec Burks as a multi-faceted guard ahead of the Thursday's 2011 NBA Draft. Burks visited Sacramento on Saturday with Klay Thompson, another wing who you'd think (I'd think) wouldn't fit the Kings' roster. Burks is a slasher primarily, a guard who dribbles hard and well, and goes to the bucket hard and well, and who draws a lot of fouls. Sounds like Tyreke Evans.
There's talk that adding him could relieve pressure on Evans to run the offense, though. Really?
Let's dig in.
The stats say: no, f--k that, no way. Burks' assist rate at Colorado this season was 19.6 percent. Evans, who struggles as a point guard, was 30 percent at Memphis. So no, if Evans is not a point guard, Burks can't see the words "point guard" from where he's standing. Not a bit.
But he doesn't need to be a point guard. He needs to be able to help Evans with point guard duties. He needs to be a help to ball movement instead of a hindrance. He needs to help relieve pressure from 'Reke and DeMarcus Cousins to create all the offense. We imagine a pure point guard doing that. But maybe we're going the wrong direction. Instead of inserting a pure point guard to take the ball out of Tyreke's hands, the team needs to add a versatile, playmaking partner to help spread the love. Helping hands instead of a new puppetmaster.
On that note, from DraftExpress' March 1 report on Burks, written by Jon Givony.
Unlike most big-time scorers from small(er) colleges, Burks is a fairly unselfish player who is more than capable of making the extra pass. Even if he's often asked to be the one creating and finishing shots for his team (particularly late in the shot clock), he's a nice weapon to have in a half-court offense thanks to his solid court vision and good basketball IQ. When Colorado's starting point guard goes to the bench, Burks will man the position, which is a good indication of the versatility he brings to the table.
Known for his ability to drive, Burks showed that his time working out with Chauncey Billups might have improved his perimeter game as well. Burks and Thompson went toe to toe, with Burks completely controlling his team from a point/two position. He showed that he could, at worst-case, control an offense for short stints and if his jumper is for real, he should be a big-time scorer at the pro-level.
It's almost a matter of taste, and we know Geoff Petrie has never ever be in love with pure point guards. He called Beno Udrih a pure point guard once, for goodness sake. He let Reggie Theus start Francisco Garcia at point guard for a spell. (God, that was the greatest week ever.) If faced with the choice between a scorer and a passer, he has pretty reliably taken the scorer.
Alec Burks, point guard? No way.
Alec Burks, Sacramento King? Eh, OK!