The Sacramento Kings need another point guard on their roster. This article examines if Steve Blake is a worthwhile signing to fill that void.
A lack depth at the point guard position, especially with the impending suspension of Darren Collison, should force the Kings out into the free agent market. They need to add a player that can play a small bench role ranging from 8 to 15 minutes a game. A possible target could be Steve Blake. Below is a highlight video from the 2014-2015 season to give you a small taste of Blake’s game.
Why the Kings Should Target Blake
Steve Blake is a great distributor and facilitator of an NBA offense. For his career, he averages 4.0 assists and 1.4 turnovers in 23.9 minutes per game. He knows how to run an NBA offense and does well at limiting turnovers while racking up assists.
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Blake brings floor spacing and a good 3 point stroke as well. He averages 1.2 triples made per game on 38.3% for his career. The Kings need perimeter shooters and any 38% plus distance shooter is a boost.
In addition, Mister Blake brings a good free throw percentage and wealth of experience to any team he plays on. Blake is a 77.9% free throw shooter for his career, so he can clearly knock down a freebie. He has also played in the NBA for 14 seasons on 8 different teams. Steve Blake can share that knowledge and experience with young players and help them expand their games.
Why the Kings Should Pass on Blake
Steve Blake is 36 years old and father time is catching up to him. He earned a negative 0.4 value over replacement player (VORP) last season. Blake is clearly a player in decline, but he played 17.0 minutes per game last season for 58 games. He could still fill the role the Kings need.
Steve Blake’s defense was never good and at 36 years old it is getting worse. In his career, Mister Blake has never posted a positive defensive box score plus minus. All stats courtesy of Basketball-Reference. The NBA point guard position is getting younger, more athletic, and more dynamic and Blake just cannot guard them. Add in that the Kings are already a struggling defensive team and this could be a serious problem.
Steve Blake has some talents to offer the Kings, but the fit is not perfect. He could knock down a few from beyond the arch, run the offense, and mentor rookie point guard Isaiah Cousins. The age, health, and defense would be major concerns, though.
The Kings could do worse than signing Steve Blake. Even if this is the season where his body breaks down, he could still be a good locker room presence and mentor to the younger players. Steve Blake is not my first choice of the available point guards for the Kings, but I would not be opposed to the signing either.