Here we go again. Another move to placate a fan base that "we are trying" to win. Another player that doesn't really fit a great need (although I guess you can say Brooks has proven production?) but is a veteran that has been part of a winning organization at one point in his career. Or something.
Rinse. Wash. Repeat.
That's my main gripe. This is not about Aaron Brooks. It's about valuing what matters to this team, rather than making cosmetic changes that make it look like they are trying to show how they are going to win. I got a much longer much nastier much more mean spirited post against Geoff Petrie and the Maloofs on that front. That's not Aaron Brooks fault. I'm just not a huge fan of smallish PG's like Brooks whose main value is to score. Even more so on a Kings team that already struggles on the selfishness/chemistry front due to two young players who don't understand the concept of what "running a play" actually means. (Yes I mean Cousins and Evans.)
Brooks is a smallish PG (about 6'0) whose primary ability is on the offensive end and is scoring the ball. And to play with the ball in his hands. (Let me know where you've heard that one. The Kings are collecting a whole set. They got a white guy from Upstate NY, a black guy from LSU country, and a black guy from Seattle. They're all the same player give or take an atribute here or there! An albano, a Princess Bride reference, and a partridge and a pear tree and the Kings will have the whole set. Way to go Petrie!) Career 24.6 USG% rate, eat your heart out!
These are Brooks stats. Not historically a great 3pt shooter. (Which is what the Kings are hoping would return no doubt.) Decent in that Brooks is a 36% career 3pt shooter (he regressed in a big way his last season in Houston and Phoenix). Which means what? I'm hoping that regression doesn't continue, but not hopeful.
The good news is that if Brooks doesn't work, it means that the Kings won't have to pay him much beyond next season. But, yikes! If it does work? Well, okay. I'm not opposed to that. But as of right now, with 7 G's, yes count them, 7 Guards on the roster (Evans, Thomas, Salmons, Thornton, Garcia, Brooks and Fredete), that's a bit much yes?
There has to be a trade (or two), and 50 wins before I feel happy about this move. Which won't happen, and that's the damning shame of it. This roster isn't being buiilt to win. It's being built on the appearances of trying to win. Which just means, as all things Maloof, it's just one big happy glitzy sham that doesn't mean jack shit.
It's good to be a Kings fan isn't it? Yay! Aaron Brooks! We spent money. Now, the Sacramento Black Holes isn't just a somewhat silly Bill Simmons joke; it's a very scary almost foregone conclusion.
Okay so, first just nitpicking:
Evans (is now a forward) and Salmons are small forwards, which are NOT guards. Point guards are not the same as shooting guards, some forwards can play guard positions. Any position player could be considered a guard with that logic. You need more than one at each position. so the depth chart in those 3 (not one position) is as follows:
Garcia is long enough to play SF, Salmons can play the SG position with the right matchup defensively, and Evans can play all 3 positions.
You're worried about chemistry, and that is something to worry about agreed. But you're misreading what you should be worried about. Essentially it's this:
This is Cousins' team. Most of the offensive plays need to be run through him, inside out with Thornton available to create his own shots. Isiah is the best spot shooter by percentage (based on his numbers as a starter) in the starting rotation. Evans has not adapted (as of last season) to a role without the ball. He doesn't shoot well enough to play the position he's being asked to play, and he's not an above the rim player. When Evans has the ball he dominates it for the entire possession and is not very good at creating opportunities for his teammates. What you'll see is him driving to the basket, the other team packs the paint immediately, and he doesn't kick out and is whistled for a charge.
The small forward position with the offense they're trying to establish needs to be filled by a defensive minded player with long arms and can cover (or do a decent job covering) the other team's best player. One who can either consistently hit an open spot shot, or clean up a rebound with a huge dunk, and doesn't demand the ball.
Back to your issue with Brooks. He actually fills a position of need. He comes off the bench, can light it up in a hurry and has proved he can distribute the ball and run a playoff caliber team's offense. He had one down year after the elevation of Kyle Lowry, then he lit it up overseas when he was locked into that contract with a team in China. I know it was China, but not only were his numbers excellent... he had no choice but to stay there after he signed the contract during the work stoppage.
Jimmer has no confidence in his jumper and cannot handle the ball well enough to create his own shot in the NBA. What the Kings have now is two very fast, playmaking pointguards and this makes me happy. They need to do something about the small forward position, unless somehow Tyreke has made a commitment to defensive stopping, or fixed his jumpshooting (like we're told he has every offseason). Cousins is only going to get better this season, and we can only hope that Thomas Robinson looks better than he has this Summer league (ugh...) because JT doesn't cut it. Hustle can only take you so far.
Well, I guess it's not wise to start a comment off in such a diametrically opposed manner, but I've said many times Tyreke Evans is a combo G (or a 1 1/2 if you prefer) whose best long term position is opposite a ball handling creative facilitator (of kinds) who can keep the offensive flowing. Thomas does that, and I'm hopeful down the line Tyler Honeycutt can morph into that too. (Although in Honeycutt's case that's only well wishing.) Either way, Tyreke Evans is not a SF any way you slice it.
Here's the bigger problem with Brooks: They have now have 6 G's who play with the ball in their hands. You can't play 6 guys on the court, and all 6 guys can't play with the ball in their hands when they are on the court. Somebody, including Tyreke, will have to leave how to play somewhat differently.
I take issue with the "this is Cousins team" because it has to be Cousins team before it actually is Cousins team. I've seen no signs that suggest that as of yet. I've seen plenty of opinions that suggest that, but no actual production and consistent to show the Kings are now DeMarcus Cousins team. If I see that, I'll say so. Plus Cousins has his own "not dribbling into the lane and jumping into multiple defenders while teams are packing the lane" moments too. It's not like Tyreke is on his own in that regard. And, when Cousins finishes better than 56% eFG% on the season at the rim, I'll believe he's the best player on the Kings. It's hard for me to believe a guy is a franchise player sporting a rather ridiculously paltry 49.9 TS%. (I'm not absolving Evans here. I just disagree this is Cousins team. Again, when it's clear that's the case, I'll say so.) Either way, Cousins has to show a much higher rate of being consistent in getting points for himself (or teammates) before I anoint him #1 offensive option status. It's a status that based on play to date Cousins, and for the most part sans 4 months of Evans rookie season, neither player has earned. If Cousins' earns that, I'll be happy. I don't think it willl be merited now or at any other point in the future, but I've been wrong before and will be again. I just don't think I am about Cousins given the fact that he finishes such a low and poor percentage at the rim. That's disconcerting no matter how you feel about Big Cuz. (I like him contrary to what some will tell you.)
I don't see what Brooks in China has to do with the NBA. If China had similar or as much high talent than okay, but Brooks spent a year in China. I could have mentioned that other guys with the same contracts in the CBA (Chinese Basketball Association) without outs to allow them to return to the NBA. Brooks, like Wilson Chandler and Kenyon Martin, were all Free Agents so they were free to sign where they chose. Unlike Wilson and Chandler however, Brooks never did get out of his contract in China. Who knows why? I don't know. I don't even care. It doesn't matter to me.
What matters to me is that Brooks fell off the face of the map after not getting the contract extension he wanted after a gaudy 3rd season. That isn't changing no matter how you frame the discussion. Also, Kyle Lowry is a better player than Aaron Brooks so to me Houston made the right decision. You always play the best player, and Lowry had more talent (always did) than Brooks to begin with. For whatever reason, it just took Lowry longer to tap his talents.
Whatever Jimmer does is of little consequence. I would be very surprised at this rate if both Jimmer Fredette and Francisco Garcia finish the year on the Kings roster. At some point, you need to go with your guys. If that's Aaron Brooks, then so be it. This move will make sense when you start thinning out your rotation, asking your players to be the players they can be, and go from there.
As far as Thomas Robinosn in Summer League, you're judging him in a showcase in which T-Rob's talents are not going to be featured in the best manner possible. Thomas Robinson will be fine. I'm not unhappy with what I've seen (one summer league game--I hate watching SL as it bores the shit out of me--it's the type of thing I would love to see live and think watching on tv/web is stupid as shit).
As far as fixing the SF position, that's what James Johnson is for. Or did you miss that memo? Apparently, the guy is going to play good defense (which he's capable), but not likely hit many 3's. I'm okay with both of that. An upgrade is an upgrade. Whatever works works. If Johnson gives the Kings average production at the SF spot, I'll be thrilled. Absolutely fucking A ecstatic thrilled.
I think you're expecting Jason Thompson to be a top 10 starting SF. JT is either a bottom tier PF, or one of the two or three best big man in the NBA off the bench. In the NBA you need talent, and JT is the type of talent that can help the Kings move forward. I'm glad the Kings resigned him rather than going for the flashier (and understandable) move in Ryan Anderson. Long term, that makes a lot of sense given there is two ends to the court. The Kings need a great deal of help on both ends of that court as every Kings fan knows.
Thanks for stopping by DRushkin.
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