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Report: Kings Looking for Combo Guard, Expected to Target Rodney Stuckey

Brian Spurlock-USA TODAY Sports

Buried in yesterdays post-draft analysis was a report by RealGM's Shams Charania that mentioned the Sacramento Kings as a potential suitor for Indiana Pacers free agent guard Rodney Stuckey.

Via RealGM -

Stuckey also averaged 3.5 rebounds and 3.1 assists in his return to a ball-handling role on a playoff threat in the Eastern Conference. The Sacramento Kings are also expected to express a level of interest in Stuckey, scouring for an available combo guard, a source said. Several contending teams could emerge for Stuckey during the free agency process.

This one of those finely worded reports that sort of drive me crazy in that they are completely non-committal. I’m not sure what, exactly, "expected to express a level of interest" means, but the reason why I think this is a somewhat valid report is because Stuckey does a lot of the things Vlade Divac has said he is looking for.

Rodney Stuckey signed for a career low $1.2 million with Indiana last season in attempt to rebuild his image around the NBA. He had been overpaid and poorly used in his last two seasons with Detroit, but he was legitimately good in a few different roles for the Pacers last year. This is a great example of a reclamation project gone right.

Stuckey appeared in 71 games for Indiana, 36 of which were starts. He shot a career high .390 from three, with a .440 FG%, 12.6 points, 3.1 assists, and 3.5 rebounds per game. He was quite good for the Pacers last season across the board, defense included, but it’s hard to say how much of that was just a one-year spike, or if this is who Stuckey always was. There is no shortage of articles claiming Stuckey was misused in Detroit.

Stuckey has the size to play either guard position, and is more than capable of running a second unit as the primary ball handler. Divac is looking for a backup point guard. Stuckey can do that. Divac has been looking for someone that can play off the ball with Darren Collison. Stuckey can do that. Divac has been looking for veteran shooting guard insurance if Ben McLemore and Nik Stauskas struggle. Stuckey can provide that. Divac has been looking to add three-point shooting. Stuckey did provide that for the Pacers last season, although it should be noted that it was an abnormally successful three-point shooting season for Stuckey. Maybe it’s his new normal, maybe it isn’t. The point is, he fits almost exactly what Sacramento is looking for, and should be a little more realistic target than Wesley Matthews, Rajon Rondo, or Arron Afflalo

Shams Charania also reported that Stuckey is looking for a deal with a contender, and that both the Indiana Pacers and Houston Rockets are expected to have interest. I don’t know how much of a contender Indiana will be next season, but the Rockets interest makes a lot of sense.

Something tells me Stuckey will ultimately follow the money after signing such a team friendly deal last season, and neither the Pacers nor the Rockets are going to make him a priority. The Kings very well could, and if they have real interest, they could gain an edge by getting to Stuckey early in free agency while the Pacers and Rockets are busy.