With the season officially behind us, this is about the time we would normally begin looking forward to the draft. Actually, we normally would have been looking forward to the draft starting around February. But with the Sacramento Kings lacking a first round pick this year, we can spend a little more time than normal reflecting on the past season. We’re going to do this by grading every player on the roster, one at a time. The Sactown Royalty staff will provide their grades and thoughts, and we’ll have a poll and can discuss and debate.
Today we’re discussing Marvin Bagley III. Bagley finished the year averaging 14.9 points, 7.6 rebounds, 1 assist and 1 block per game.
Bagley exceeded all of my expectations for this season. He was a better defender, better shooter, better playmaker, better everything than I had expected. This isn’t to say he was perfect. There’s still lots of room for Bagley to grow and improve as a player, which only makes this season even more exciting.
I agree with Greg. I did not expect much of Marvin Bagley this year - mostly due to Dave Joerger and his historic treatment of rookies. That played out as expected until Vlade forced Joerger into playing him. Once Marvin got consistent time, he was the third most impactful King behind De’Aaron Fox and Buddy Hield. He also has the potential to be an incredible shot-blocker - he missed many block opportunities by a fingertip. Remember Rondae Hollis-Jefferson laying it in over him at the buzzer? That was a sneeze away from being BLOCKED. BY. BAGLEY. For all that was said about him being distant from media, he was always personable with me.
The only way Bagley does not secure an A is if I look at him through the lens of having the 4th or 5th best rookie season as the #2 pick. But Bagley did not pick himself 2nd. Also, he should not be graded down for being on a better team than DeAndre Ayton, Luka Doncic and Trae Young, resulting in him being much less of a focal point of the team’s nightly effort and direction. Bagley blew away most reasonable expectations. His development of his three-point shot was something that most were hoping for next season (at the earliest). And that motor is something to love!
Bagley’s big challenge for next year will be to continue his upward trajectory. De’Aaron Fox’s second season was the exception to the standard second-year rule, but Fox’s ascension through the ranks will be used as a yardstick for Bagley in his second season. Yes, Bagley has things to work on, especially becoming more consistent on the defensive end and learning to let the game come to him just a little more on offense. But if he continues his upward trajectory he could wind up making the Kings front office look very, very smart for selecting him.
Marvin Bagley didn’t take long to make an impact for this team in his rookie year. He utilized his second jump to his advantage to pull down many rebounds and putbacks, developed a smooth jumper from beyond the paint and we saw him shoot the three at a much better clip to end the season. There’s definitely areas of growth like post-playmaking, timing blocks better, not biting on pump fakes and such, but the way he has quickly learned fundamentals throughout the season, I’m betting he’ll improve in many areas of his game next season.
Bagley taking a bigger leap next season. like Rob mentioned, will be a great measuring point. The next step should be to start Bagley full-time next season and see where he goes, along with pairing a big that’ll balance well with him.
How would you grade Marvin Bagley’s season?
This poll is closed