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30Q: Can Frank Mason crack the rotation?

On a team of 37 guards, can Mason find a consistent role?

2017 Las Vegas Summer League - Sacramento Kings v Milwaukee Bucks Photo by Ethan Miller/Getty Images

Naismith Trophy winner.
Oscar Robertson Trophy winner.
Associated Press player of the year.
National Basketball Coaches Association player of the year.
John R. Wooden Award winner.
Sporting News player of the year.
CBS Sports national player of the year.
Consensus All-American selection.

Frank Mason III completed a college career for the history books. He was rewarded with falling to the 34th picks of the NBA Draft, and an opportunity to enter training camp as the Sacramento Kings 3rd point guard on the depth chart.

The hype is being thrust upon De’Aaron Fox, but the resumé suggests we’d be fools to count out Frank Mason. He’ll compete with Fox and George Hill for point guard minutes, but we know Dave Joerger won’t care about draft pedigree or potential. As a four-year college player Mason may actually enter the season with a leg up on Fox.

When we think of Mason’s future, I see three paths.

Worst Case:

Mason is an afterthought, plays primarily in Reno, and doesn’t play for the Kings until the very end of the season.

Best Case:

Mason immediately proves worthy of playing at the NBA level. His floor is a 10-year backup point guard. The development of Mason and Fox makes Hill expendable at the trade deadline.

Most Likely Case:

Mason earns minutes, but is still sharing time with Fox and Hill throughout the year. Mason plays more at the beginning of the season and slowly cedes minutes to Fox as the year progresses. Kings fans spend the next offseason convinced Mason is all we need as a backup and that we should trade Hill.

I don’t know what Mason’s NBA future holds, but his NCAA history tells me it wouldn’t be wise to count him out.