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Sacramento Kings Mid-Season Report

Sacramento Kings DeAaron Fox, Keegan Murray, Domantas Sabonis together on the court

Photo by Lachlan Cunningham

At the Mid-Season Recap, one of the biggest surprises in the 2022-23 campaign is the Sacramento Kings. With an incredible 40-27 record, this year’s Sacramento squad currently sits at No. 2 in the Western Conference. Conversely, head coach Mike Brown looks to be one of the top candidates for Coach of the Year.

For more on this Mid-season Recap series, check out BSP’s Chrys Henderson and his view on the Los Angeles Clippers here.

But how has a team that in the past known to be rebuilding play out of their minds this year?

Sacramento Kings Mid-Season Recap: Fox Takes Flight

One big reason why is the emergence of point guard De’Aaron Fox. Now in his sixth season in the NBA, Fox has paced the Kings with a career-best scoring average at 25.5 points per game. Pair that with an average of 6.3 assists and a career-high 4.3 rebounds a night, it’s easy to see why Swipa is becoming more of a household name. The No. 5 pick back in the 2017 draft is emerging into a deadly 3-level scorer. However, the former Kentucky Wildcat is more recognizable for his athleticism and playmaking. Being a leader of a team is one of the expectations of a point guard. And Fox knows he is capable of doing just that for a young Sacramento squad.

Sabonis Having Career Year

Another key piece to the Kings’ surprising success is the play of Lithuanian big man Domantas Sabonis. A nightly double-double or even triple-double threat, Sabonis is averaging 19 points, about 12.5 boards, and just over 7 assists per contest. After being acquired from the Indiana Pacers at the trade deadline last season, Sabonis has upped his game. Not only that, but the former Gonzaga Bulldog is proving to be a solid modern hybrid big. Not only can he rebound well, but he’s a capable stretch five, making 37% of his threes so far this season. He’s also putting up career-highs of 63.5% from two, 76.3% from the line, and 12.4 boards a night. Sabonis, on one hand, can be a guy who can work as anchor for any team down low. Likewise, he can expand his range which gives his defenders more aspects of his game to try to control.

Huerter Shooting the Lights Out

Sacramento Kings Kevin Huerter after making a three

A third player stepping up in a new location is swingman Kevin Huerter. Conversely and statistically speaking, the fifth-year wing is putting up breakout numbers of his own. Huerter is currently averaging 15, 3, and 3 a night, with a career-best 40.9% 3-point percentage. The former Maryland Terrapin also earned the honor of participating in this season’s 3-point contest at All Star Weekend in Salt Lake City. The former 19th pick by the Atlanta Hawks in the 2018 NBA Draft is now showing signs of being a knockdown shooter. If he continues to round out his shooting form, his play style could turn into something similar of a young Kyle Korver.

Now, with the season coming down the home stretch, Sacramento looks poised for a top playoff spot in the West. If Fox and Sabonis can continue to lead the way they do, these Kings will be a force to reckon with for years to come. Likewise, they will be tough to stop get consistent production off the bench from guys like Harrison Barnes. This Sacramento team caught everyone by surprise, and, comparatively, the Pacific division has been rather weak this season. Who knows what will be next for the Kings in upcoming seasons? Only time will tell.

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