How De'Aaron Fox can change Sacramento's offense

Much has been made of the Kings signing Zach Randolph, Vince Carter, and George Hill to bridge the gap over the next few years. But the most important acquisition Sacramento made over the off-season was undoubtedly the drafting of De'Aaron Fox. He's not going to be an off-ball threat, but he has all the exact tools to improve where the Kings lacked last season on the offensive side.

The Kings ranked eighth in spot up shooting and 11th in post-up plays last season. In every other aspect, they were either average or worse. 

Here's exactly how Fox can address each area the Kings struggled in:

Transition

Kings ranking in 2016-17: 18th

Fox is one of the quickest point guards we've seen come through the college system in a few years. He has nimble hands and averaged close to two steals per game. A fair portion of Fox's offense will come in transition. This is probably the clearest area where he will transform how the Kings play. 

Pick and Roll (ball handler only)

Kings ranking in 2016-17: 21st

Fox may take a little while to bring this area up for the Kings, as he didn't run it as much in Kentucky as he'll be asked to in the NBA. Clearly, his ability to get past his defender on a switch with his speed will be an upside in this category. Defenses will almost certainly go under screens on him, so he'll have to work on that jumper so he can make them pay. 

Cutting

Kings ranking in 2016-17: 28th

Fox is extremely athletic, but when he's on the floor he'll mainly be used as the primary ball handler. It's not unforeseeable that he could incorporate some cutting into his game in the moments he shares with Hill on the floor. 

Dribble handoffs

Kings ranking in 2016-17: 18th

This is going to come down to the development of the wings over the coming season. Fox should be adept at running DHO's, but it's unlikely that he would be taking many shots from them. Perhaps the most glaring development issue is whether Buddy Hield can become potent from DHO's. Hield scored 0.71 points per possession last year from dribble handoffs, which was well below league average. Fox and Hield will both need to provide some strong offense in this area this season. 

Put backs

Kings ranking in 2016-17: 24th

The Kings may see a rise in put backs, depending on what style of offense Dave Joeger runs. WIth Demarcus Cousins gone, there will be less pick and pop options, and Kosta Koufos, Zach Randolph, and Willey Cauley-Stein will pick up the slack. Fox perhaps doesn't have the strength to finish against bigger bodies at a high clip around the rim yet, but that won't stop him from trying. The Sacramento bigs will have a chance to clean up the offensive glass in pick and roll situations. The other issue is whether Skal Labisierre and Georgios Papagiannis play a lot of minutes with Fox, as they both look more like stretch bigs at this point in time.

Fox's vision will also help in getting the ball to wing players coming off screens, which the Kings were decent at last year. With Randolph setting off ball screens and Fox setting it up, the Kings should be able to really open things up for Buddy Hield. 


Like what you've read? Share it with your friends on