• Hoop Ball Kings is proud to bring you the sixth installment of a brand new series that we are rolling out in the lead up to the 2017-18 NBA season. Over the next two months we will be doing a roundtable series which involves all three of our writers here at Hoop Ball Kings. We’ll be discussing various topics including season projections for each player on the Kings roster, record predictions and more.

    First and foremost, we will run through every player currently on the Kings roster and provide our personal predictions for their output this season.

    Join the conversation: Want to make your own projections and predictions? Feel free to leave them in the comments below or tweet them to us @HoopBallKings on Twitter, or Hoop Ball Kings on Facebook.

    The Kings were thrilled when De’Aaron Fox fell to them at No. 5 during the 2017 NBA Draft. Fans openly embraced Fox in the leadup to June’s draft and got their wish come on draft night when the former Kentucky product fell right into Sacramento’s lap. He’s already been touted as the point guard of the future for the Kings and rightfully so. The selection was praised not only by local media and fans, but by national media too; a rare occurrence in recent times.

    Fox compiled averages of 16.7 points, 3.9 rebounds, 4.6 assists and 1.5 steals in 29.6 minutes per game (36 games) on 47.8 percent shooting from the field (24.6 percent from three). His shooting woes are well-known, and we caught a glimpse of that during summer league but his jump shot is mechanically sound and the potential is there to be a reliable outside shooter. He’s going to need to add some more muscle too, but this will all develop over time and it’s why George Hill was brought in to help groom Fox into the point guard he’s projected to be.

    Will Fox make an instant impact for the Kings, or will he take time to fully develop into a reliable NBA player?

    Jake Fitzgibbon

    Stat-line Prediction: 11.2 points, 3.1 rebounds, 4.8 assists, 1.4 steals and 0.1 blocks. 43.2% FG, 32% 3PT, 71% FT.

    Fox will come off the bench to start the season, that’s almost a given. However, I think it’s likely that Fox and Hill play next to each other regularly as the season rolls on. It’ll likely depend on match ups and I’m sure Joerger will be open to experimenting with the two point guards playing next to each other (as he’s done in the past). Fox will encounter speed bumps throughout the season, just like any rookie does, but having someone like Hill there to mentor him and guide him along the way is going to be extremely beneficial.

    His outside shooting is going to be a struggle all year-long and I don’t expect to see major strides in that department this season. His free throw shooting is another concern, particularly after what I saw during summer league. Defensively, he’s going to be a pest and that’s going to work well against guys like Steph Curry and Chris Paul; it’s something that the Kings haven’t had in a while from the point guard spot.

    Minutes wise I think he will hover around 20-25 minutes, especially early on in the season and that may gradually increase month to month. On the whole, I think he will be fairly productive for the Kings and will be in the conversation for Rookie of the Year, but with such a loaded draft class it will be hard to crack the top spot.

    Nick Avila

    Stat-line Prediction: 12.5 points, 3.8 rebounds, 3.5 assists, 1.6 steals and 0.3 blocks. 44% FG, 32% 3PT, 73% FT.

    Fox is a bit of a mystery since he hasn’t had any regular season experience as an incoming rookie. What’s almost guaranteed from him is a tough-minded defensive presence and a bench leader from the start. Fox will be a catalyst of the second unit and is expected to be a vocal leader.

    As the Kings’ first of three first-round picks, Fox has high expectations. When he was drafted, everyone assumed he’d immediately be the starter; that was until the Kings signed George Hill to a deal worth $57 million over three years.

    If all goes well for Fox and he forces the Kings to make him a starter earlier than expected, his minutes could significantly increase along with his production. It’s an interesting story line to follow as the Kings obviously see Fox as the starter but have a large sum of money invested in Hill for the next couple years.

    Jon Schifferle

    Stat-line Prediction: 10.5 points, 3.0 rebounds, 3.5 assists, 1.3 steals and 0.1 blocks. 42% FG, 30.5% 3PT, 72% FT.

    While George Hill figures to take up most of the minutes at point guard early in the season, it wouldn’t be surprising to see the team find plenty of opportunities for Fox. Hill has a decent history of injuries, and the Kings showed last season that they’re willing to rest their veterans in order to keep them fresh.

    Fox may struggle somewhat with his field goal percentage, but his three-point percentage figures to be much better than it was during his only season at Kentucky. Fox should also be able to make an impact on the fast break, and having so many big men who run the floor will be a big boost for him. While many aspects of his game are still raw, Fox has enough present skill to potentially earn around 20-25 minutes per game.

    Join the conversation: Want to make your own projections and predictions? Feel free to leave them in the comments below or tweet them to us @HoopBallKings on Twitter, or Hoop Ball Kings on Facebook.

    Missed the previous installments of Hoop Ball Kings’ Roundtable Series? Click HERE to read them.

Fantasy News

  • Kristaps Porzingis - F/C - Dallas Mavericks

    Knicks president Steve Mills claimed that Kristaps Porzingis threatened to return to Europe had the Knicks not completed a trade elsewhere according to Kurt Heln of NBC Sports

    The tense history between Porzingis and the Knicks front office has been well documented, which makes a startling headline like this one not all that surprising. It's safe to assume that Dallas' front office will not be hearing such requests, as they represent an opportunity for optimism for both Porzingis and their franchise as a whole.

    Source: NBC Sports

  • Tacko Fall - C - College

    Tacko Fall of UCF, Marques Bolden of Duke, Nick Weiler-Babb of Iowa State, Jalen Hudson of Florida, Amir Hinton of Shaw University and Myles Powell of Seton Hall will all be participants of the Kings pre-draft workout.

    All of the players that will be working out for the Kings are not projected to be drafted next month. The Kings are looking at guys for their second round selections as they have three picks in that round. Unfortunately, those are the only picks they have this year as their first round selection is owned by the Celtics. Expect the Kings to continue to look at players with high ceilings like Tacko Fall. Fall, a 7’7″ center has a 10’2″ standing reach and an 8’2″ wingspan. These measurements are why Fall will get to the NBA at some point. The question of how big of an impact he will make remains to be seen. Perhaps the Kings will draft the large center with one of their three second round picks.

    Source: Deuce Mason on Twitter

  • Patrick McCaw - SG/SF - Toronto Raptors

    Patrick McCaw (personal reasons) will remain sidelined for Thursday's Game 5 vs. the Bucks.

    McCaw has missed the entire ECF thus far due to personal reasons. The basketball community hopes the best for the youngster. Even if he were to come back, he wouldn't be in line for many minutes as Norman Powell and Fred VanVleet have established themselves as part of the team's shortened eight man rotation.

    Source: NBA Injury Report

  • OG Anunoby - F - Toronto Raptors

    Head coach Nick Nurse told the media that OG Anunoby (appendectomy) is still without a timetable to return but said that he's doing more every day.

    Anunoby has missed the entire playoffs after suffering an emergency appendectomy. Now that Game 6 is necessary and there is a greater likelihood that there will be a Game 7, the chances improve that we see Anunoby return to the court to face the Bucks. The Raptors could use another long versatile defender to throw at the Greek Freak and his teammates. Continue to stay tuned to how Anunoby continues to progress on the court to see if he will be able to return this series.

    Source: Michael Grange on Twitter

  • Kawhi Leonard - F - Toronto Raptors

    Danny Green never believed Kawhi Leonard was anything but legitimately hurt last year and back-to-back brilliant performances the last two games reinforces how serious the injury was.

    “He’s playing through pain,” Danny Green said to a handful of reporters, long after Leonard left the locker room. “He can’t even celebrate baskets because of how painful it is.” For the last couple games Kawhi has dragged around his right leg like there was a nail hammered into it while the Raptors won’t admit there is a problem. Toronto’s bench was brilliant yesterday carrying the team to a victory and with Game 5 set to take place on Thursday Leonard won’t have much time to rest.

    Source: Sports Illustrated

  • Pau Gasol - C/F - Milwaukee Bucks

    Pau Gasol made it official by confirming that he won’t be playing for Spain at the upcoming FIBA Basketball World Cup due to his foot fracture.

    “I would have loved playing with Spain, with my teammates. It has been always important playing for my National Team”, Gasol said. The big man added that he would love to end his international career by playing in the Olympics in Tokyo but after finishing the worst statistical season of his NBA career we have to wonder whether injuries will allow him to continue competing at the highest level.

    Source: ACB

  • Kyrie Irving - G - Boston Celtics

    Brian Windhorst of ESPN is reporting that Kyrie Irving is open to joining the Lakers but they aren’t as high on his list as a few other teams.

    Irving will become an unrestricted free agent on July 1st and he has the Celtics, the Knicks and the Nets all ahead of the Lakers as potential destinations. Joining the Lakers would mean reuniting with LeBron James, his former teammate with the Cavs. Kyrie and LeBron overcame a 3-1 deficit against the Warriors to win the championship in 2016 but their relationship went south leading to Irving’s trade to the Celtics last year.

    Source: ESPN

  • Kevin Durant - F - Golden State Warriors

    Warriors star Kevin Durant has not made a decision on where he’s taking his talents next season, according to his manager Rich Kleiman.

    “Kevin is 100 percent undecided,” Kleiman told the Wall Street Journal. “He really doesn’t know, and I really don’t know.” KD has strongly been linked to the Knicks, while the Clippers and the Nets seem to have increased their odds as well, but it’s hard to know what Durant really has in his mind.

    Source: Wall Street Journal

  • Anthony Davis - F/C - New Orleans Pelicans

    FS1’s Chris Broussard suggested that the Nets could be a dark horse when it comes to landing Anthony Davis.

    Brooklyn could offer the Pelicans a package that includes D’Angelo Russell (as part of a sign-and-trade), big man Jarrett Allen and their two first-round picks in the June 20 NBA Draft, the No. 17 and No. 27 overall selections. The Nets’ hope is to bring both AD and free agent-to-be Kyrie Irving to Brooklyn as Sean Marks seems determined to build a contender. AD and his agent Rich Paul are expected to meet with David Griffin in Los Angeles soon, so we should know more about the All-Star’s’ future once this meeting finally takes place.

    Source: FOX Sports

  • Tobias Harris - F - Philadelphia Sixers

    Keith Pompey of the Phily Inquirer is reporting that Tobias Harris will be on the radar of at least five teams, including the Kings, the Mavs, the Jazz, the Nets and the Pacers, all of which have room to add a maximum-salary free agent.

    The Sixers will have a full plate this offseason as they have three starters headed toward unrestricted free agency this summer in Jimmy Butler, Tobias Harris and J.J. Redick. Philadelphia owns Harris’ Bird rights, meaning they can offer him the most-lucrative deal, a five-year, $188 million pact while the most another team could offer would be a four-year deal at $141 million. Harris will soon be turning 27 and entering his prime and his services will absolutely be in demand even thought he averaged just 15.5 points and 9.2 rebounds in 12 playoff games this year.

    Source: Phily Inquirer