Aaron Brooks: Wait and See


Aaron Brooks was on the NBA radar a couple of years ago. Then, he was side-lined with an injury.

His road has taken a few twists and turns before landing him here in Sacramento.

Undoubtedly, he was picked up to add depth to the backcourt, but how and where he will fit remains to be seen.

It is a game of wait and see.

Aaron Jamal Brooks was born Jan 14, 1985, in Seattle, Washington, which makes him 27 years old. ESPN lists him at 6’0” with 2010-2011 stats of 10.7ppg, 3.9 apg 1.3 rpg, and PER 13.2

Following his selection as the 26th draft pick in the 2007 draft to the Houston Rockets, Brooks has accumulated four NBA seasons under his belt to date. A fifth season was spent in China.

In his first two seasons, his career made a steady climb upward to a career high third season, marked by a decline his fourth season.

First NBA Season 2007-2008

In his début as a rookie, Brooks didn’t get a lot of burn, with a plethora of good players on the team. He played 51 games off the bench, averaging 11.9 minutes per game.

Second NBA Season 2008-2009

He had a solid second season with the Rockets, playing 80 games, starting in 35, averaging 25 minutes per game, more than doubling his minutes from his rookie season. While his FG % was .404, he showed a solid 3P% of .366 and FT percentage of .866. He also averaged 2 rebounds, 3 assists and 11.2 points.

Third NBA Season 2009-2010

There is no question; Aaron Brooks’ name was rising on the radar in his 2009-1010 NBA season. In April, 2010, he won the NBA’s Most Improved Player award while playing with the Rockets. He was enjoying the height of his career at that time.

He played 82 games, in which he started, averaging 35.6 minutes, up 10 minutes per game from previous season. He averaged a .432 FG% and .398 3-point %, both improved from his previous season. He averaged 2.7 rebounds, 5.3 assists, and 19.6 points, all up from his previous season.

Fourth NBA Season 2010-2011

In 2010, Aaron suffered an ankle injury. When Brooks returned, there was uncertainty which reigned throughout the league as to who would own the starting spot. It wasn’t pretty for Brooks. Kyle Lowry would emerge the victor, with Brooks’ starting position later stripped from him.

Brooks played 34 games with Houston, starting in 7 of them. In contrast Lowry played 75 games, starting in 71. No doubt, Lowry’s rise only added insult to injury.

Brooks minutes declined, down to 23.9 per game, a drop of more than 11 minutes per game. He also took a hit to his FG%, a drop to .346, and 3P% a substantial drop to .284. With fewer minutes there was no surprise his other stats declined as well (1.5 rebounds, 3.8 assists, and 11.6 points) per game. One silver lining – his free throw percentage improved to .94.

It didn’t help matters when Brooks was suspended for walking off the court midway through the fourth quarter in Houston’s overtime win against the Grizzlies, following a substitution by then coach, Rick Adelman. Within two weeks Brooks was traded to the Phoenix Suns for Goran Dragic.

Brooks played 25 games with Phoenix, where his minutes continued to diminish to 18.9 per game. He spent much of his time sidelined with an ankle injury. He did see a modest rebound to his FG% to .430 and 3P% to .328. The silver lining was an increase in his assists to 4.2, even with few minutes of play. He showed a combined 2.35 assist/ turnover rate in 2010-2011 season even over the 1.85 in his 2009-2010 season.

Overall, it is safe to say Brooks experienced an abruptly eclipsing career, a downward fall due to circumstance, injury, and how he handled the situation.

The China Experience CBA 2011-2012

NBA reporter, Alex Kennedy reported November 17, 2011 that Brooks signed with China, during the NBA lockout to play on the Guandong Tigers Chinese Basketball League (CBA) playoffs.

Later, Suns General Manager, Lance Blanks Headed to China to Visit Brooks in March 2012 to check on him. It was noted that according to Asia-Basket.com, Brooks averaged 21.9 points, 4.7 assists and 1.9 steals a game for Guandong. He was experiencing success with this Asian team, but how that translates to the NBA is unclear.

On July 16, 2012, Brooks agreed to a two-year deal with the Sacramento Kings, following his become a free agent. Ailene Voisin, writer for the Sacramento Bee, reported Aaron Brooks officially signed a two-year deal.

Sacramento Kings President of Operations, Geoff Petrie, apparently has shown interest in Brooks before.

According to Ms. Voisin:

"His (Petrie’s)pursuit of the 6-foot, 161-pound Brooks dates back to the Seattle native’s college career at Oregon. Petrie tried to acquire an additional first-round pick in 2007 to acquire the Ducks’ standout."

Well, he finally got him.

It is doubtful that Brooks was picked up to replace Isaiah Thomas in the starting point guard position, given his performance last season. That would seem to leave Brooks coming off the bench sharing minutes with Jimmer Fredette. Byran Rosa discussed this predicament with Fredette further.

At this point, it may be safe to say this is something we are all going to have to wait to see.