Expectations, while tempered, were elevated prior to tip-off of the 2011-2012 season for the Sacramento Kings. After finishing 2010-11 on a frenzied pace, looking like a much improved team with the addition of Marcus Thornton, the ’12 season was to be the start of good things for the Sacramento franchise. An improved DeMarcus Cousins, a healthy Tyreke Evans, financial freedom and teh Jimmer? Oh man, let’s get this party started.
Well, the party is boring. And nobody is here, ‘cept that one drunk guy in the back with an ugly beard who likes to shoot way too many three pointers. But despite the lack luster, well, everything so far – one light has shined bright (outside of Isaiah Thomas) and that’s the solid play of Jason Thompson.
With the addition of both Chuck Hayes and J.J. Hickson, many were unsure of Thompson’s role in the Kings future. And while it’s still extremely early in the Kings season, Thompson has given the Kings plenty of reasons for him to remain in purple and black for the foreseeable future.
Despite JT’s fewer minutes with the Kings logjam of big men, the Rider product has been effective as ever, putting up career high’s across the board including a much higher true shooting percentage, effective field goal percentage, career low turnover rates and a higher than league average win share per 48 minutes. In short, Thompson, with limited floor time, quite possibly has been the most effective King through the first 14 games of the year.
We all know about JT’s relentless motor – he’s had it since he was a rookie, but Thompson’s game has taken a big leap from previous years in terms of effectiveness, which is where players become valuable. NBA players are a talented bunch and if given the opportunities, they’ll put up stats – it’s just that the talented players do it much more efficiently than others. JT, for whatever faults you want to find in his game, has been doing just that. He’s certainly made the most out of the time he’s been given and for a roster so full of youthful players who’ve refused to grow, Thompson hasn’t fallen into that category.
It’s been an incredibly rough and uninspiring start to the season for fans of purple and black, but if you’re looking for a beacon of hope, Jason Thompson‘s light is shining brightly.