It’s only been one month, but Tyrese Haliburton has already proven to be one of the steals of the NBA Draft and a top contender for Rookie of the Year. Haliburton is fourth among rookies in scoring and second in assists despite being selected 12th overall.
Haliburton also is second on the Kings in assists and steals, first in 3-point percentage, and third in field-goal percentage behind their two centers, Richaun Holmes and Hassan Whiteside. The rookie is already an integral part of the franchise despite being two months into his Sacramento tenure.
On a recent episode of the “All the Smoke” podcast with former King Matt Barnes and Stephen Jackson, De’Aaron Fox said that Haliburton’s maturity and feel for the game already stick out despite having to jump in after a shortened training camp and preseason:
“He’s been great, you would have thought he’s in his second or third year the way that he’s out there playing. And for these rookies to not get any Summer League, a short training camp, just come in and you got your team, you find out who you was playing with a month before the season starts. That’s a lot of adversity that you really got to overcome.”
Haliburton’s impact came almost immediately, and Fox was impressed by his rookie’s performance in the season opener, as he relayed on the podcast:
“Man his first game in the league, he played an overtime game in Denver, and you know it’s tough to play in Denver. He really showed that he’s built for this, and he really can. He understands the game so well. He runs the pick-and-roll extremely well, he’s a good shooter, like you say, he does everything extremely well for us.”
Haliburton has been complimentary of Fox during his brief time in the NBA, and clearly, the feeling is mutual, which bodes well for the pair’s partnership moving forward. It also helps that the Kings nailed their first pick for the second time in four seasons. It’s already obvious that Haliburton is made to last in this league.
More news for Friday:
- The Kings play tonight, but ICYMI, both their games in Memphis were postponed as the Grizzlies shut down for contact tracing.
- Bleacher Report ranked Fox and Haliburton in their top 10 duos under 25 years old.
- Jason Anderson dives into some of the team’s defensive issues.
- In real estate news, Vlade Divac is selling his Sacramento home.