The Sacramento Kings signed Ramon Sessions last week to a reported two-year deal worth $4.2 million, and he says he is ready to come in and provide the Kings with both leadership and ball movement.
Head coach Michael Malone said on Friday that he wants to see a battle in training camp between Darren Collison, Sessions and Ray McCallum for the point guard spot. He also said he expects to use Sessions at the shooting guard position at times.
Sessions, who averaged 12.3 points, 4.1 assists and 2.4 rebounds last season, took some time to speak to Sactown Royalty during media day on Friday.
When the Kings approached you, what did they tell you they liked about your game and what do you think they want to see out of you?
They were excited to have me, they saw me as a veteran guy that can play the one and the two, be a leader, which this team did lack a little bit in the past couple of years. But they're definitely changing the culture...it's exciting, they're building something good.
The Kings already had Darren Collison and Ray McCallum. How do you see yourself fitting in? Talk about what you think the three of you can bring to the Kings backcourt.
I think all three of us are talented as you can look for in a backcourt. Having three guys like that that can play is exciting. It's going to be good in training camp going back and forth. We're all looking forward to just coming out here and playing well and becoming a team and having a great season.
Darren Collison reached out to you right after you signed with the Kings. What did he say to you?
Yeah, he was one of the first guys that reached out to me when I signed and he was saying, ‘we've got to be the leaders here. Just looking forward to playing with you.' We always went at it with us being backups for the majority of our careers, so we always went at it on other teams, but to be on the same team is a good feeling.
How would you say your game and Collison's game are different?
I think they are different and similar in certain ways. He's a point guard, he can shoot the corner three and I'm one of those guys that's going to try and penetrate. We're both quick, we're both quick with the ball and I think it's tough for defenses to guard both of us.
This team needs more ball movement, do you think you can help in that area?
Definitely. I'm going to have the ball a lot being a point guard, so just making sure guys get their shots and not worrying about my shot as much because when guys get their shots, they do a lot more things on the defensive end and they'll be more into the game. So it's one of those things, just try to get everybody involved. I think we were like last in assists last year; I think I saw that. You can't win games like that, there's no secret about it.
What would you say is the strongest part of your game?
I would say on the offensive end, just penetrating and breaking down the defense. If that's scoring the ball, getting to the free throw line or dishing it, I feel like I do that pretty good...that's been with my career for a while.
You've been in the league for a little while now, do you have a goal individually for improving your game in a specific area this season?
I wouldn't say there is just one goal, but every year there are a bunch of goals - trying to win games, trying to become more of a leader, just trying to be a professional. I'm going on eight years, it's one of those things where I'm a vet now, there's no questions about it and some people look at it like it's a bad thing or you're getting old, but I look at as being blessed. To play eight years in the league, coming from where I come from, being the 56th pick, so it's a blessing for me, just trying to build on all aspects of my game.
Is it a goal of yours to be a starter?
I come in every season wanting to become a starter, there's no secret about it. Everybody wants to be a starter in the NBA. It's one of those things, you just have to go in and do what you do, play your game and if you're not the starter just still be the best you can be at whatever role the team needs you to be at.
You have come to Sacramento quite a bit as part of opposing teams. What do you think of these fans?
The fans are great, I mean me growing up in the early 90s, just watching how Arco [Arena] used to be and just trying to bring that back. I played in Reno, so I did come Sac a lot. The fans are always great, even when you come here and play for other teams that's one thing about it - you're going to get a great crowd.
Anything else you would like to say the fans? What can they expect out of you?
I'm going to be a professional, I'm going to show up every night and play hard and play the right way.