We are at the final position in our end of season grades, and today, we will take a look at the Sacramento Kings small forwards.
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The small forward position made an interesting transition this season. For most of the season Rudy Gay filled most of, if not all, of the minutes at the small forward spot. In the second half we saw a shift in lineups and rotations.
This shift saw Rudy Gay move to power forward, something that Kings fans had coveted ever since the team acquired Gay from Toronto. The transition also opened up up more minutes for the rest of the roster at small forward, primarily Omri Casspi and Derek Williams.
Casspi took a huge step forward down the stretch. He saw his minutes increase as the season came to an end and Casspi produced. The month of April was Casspi’s best of the season, as he averaged 20 points and 6 rebounds in 38 minutes. He also expanded his game beyond the three point line, hitting 50% on over three attempts per game. For the season, Casspi was fine but not spectacular. His confidence fluctuated and the extended minutes seemed to help his effort on both ends of the floor. If I was grading just the second half I would give Casspi a solid B.
Season Grade: C
Derrick Williams, like his teammate Casspi, saw a bump and his role.
His minutes didn’t see the same jump as Casspi. His minutes only increased by around five minutes a game, but his playing time became consistent. With consistent time came much more consistent play, as he went from averaging around seven points a game from October to February, but improved his scoring punch in March and April, to the tune of 15 points a night.
He almost doubled his rebounds and assists as well. While his rebound total isn’t where many would like to see it, especially for a guy of his size and athleticism, he still played well down the stretch. Like with Casspi I would give Williams a B or B- for his second half.
Season Grade: C
Casspi and Williams are both free agents this summer. The Sacramento Kings will have an interesting decision to make on whether they want to bring one, both or neither back for next season. Our Tony Xypteras broke down the potential decision in our “Who Takes the Crown” series.
Both players are not guys we can’t live without, but at a reasonable price, one or both could make sense to retain. It is likely that the Kings will pick only one guy, but the future of both players in Sacramento is in serious doubt.