Sacramento Kings rookie roundup: February 11-17

LOS ANGELES, CA - FEBRUARY 16: Bogdan Bogdanovic
LOS ANGELES, CA - FEBRUARY 16: Bogdan Bogdanovic /

A trio of close games showcased the Sacramento Kings rookies in their various roles. Which young building block took the top spot in this week’s Rookie Roundup?

The Sacramento Kings had one victory this week that looked closer than the final score.  They also had two losses that showed far the young squad has come since October.  In all three, Sacramento’s core group of rookies came off particularly well.  But only one can be atop the weekly Rookie Roundup standings!  Let’s see how they did this week.

(I’m defining the week as the period between Sunday, Feb. 11 and Saturday, Feb. 17)

Bogdan Bogdanovic

Weekly Stats: 17.3 ppg, 4.0 rpg, 5.6 apg, 1.0 stls, 47.7% FG, 45% 3PT, 50.0% FT

Season to Date: 11.5 ppg, 2.7 rpg, 3.2 apg, 1.0 stls, 0.2 blks, 46.4% FG, 40.0% 3PT, 84.0% FT

Bogdanovic’s line in the Rising Stars Challenge during All-Star Weekend is not a factor in the weekly stats, but the fact that his performance earned game MVP honors shows how far his play has come in just half a season.  However, even without considering that game, a quick scan of Bogi’s line this week reveals the confident and steady style of play he has provided for Sacramento this year.  With that, Bogdanovic becomes the first repeat champion of the Rookie Roundup.  That might not be as cool as the Rising Stars MVP, but I figure it’s close.

Related Story: Buddy Hield's mid-season report card

De’Aaron Fox

Weekly Stats: 14.3 ppg, 2.6 rpg, 4 apg, 1.7 stls, 0 blks, 42.1% FG, 33.3% 3PT, 80.0% FT

Season to Date: 11.3 ppg, 2.6 rpg, 4.3 apg, 1.0 stls, 0.2 blks, 41% FG, 32.6% 3PT, 73.4% FT

Fox could have easily been the top rookie this week if not for a nasty blow to the head in Houston that cut his night short.  A comparison between his week that was and his season to date show that while most elements of his game are starting to settle in, he is finding increased ways to score.  His steals are also improving, showing his underrated defensive ability.  The only thing I’d like to see going forward in Fox’s game is an increase in assists.  As the team moves forward and chemistry increases, hopefully, this is something that will improve over time.

Justin Jackson

Weekly Stats: 10.3 ppg, 4.7 rpg, 3.3 apg, 0.3 stls, 0.6 blks, 50% FG, 33.3% 3PT, 100% FT

Season to Date: 6.1 ppg, 2.4 rpg, 0.9 apg, 0.4 stls, 0.2 blks, 43.3% FG, 30.5% 3PT, 65.2% FT

In truth, all three of the rookies on the active Kings roster had an excellent week relative to their roles.  Jackson continues to hold his own amidst an increase in minutes (28.0 minute average in February as opposed to 18.0 the month prior).  His steadily improving shooting percentage (at least from inside the three-point line) is a big reason he has remained as the starting small forward for the Kings.

Next: Willie Cauley-Stein's mid-season report card

Frank Mason

Weekly Stats: DNP

Season to Date: 7.6 ppg, 2.1 rpg, 2.9 apg, 0.5 stls, 0.1 blks, 38.5% FG, 41.9% 3PT, 76.2% FT

Mason continues to be out, but his return should be soon now that the All-Star break is behind us.  We should be seeing Mason back on the court by the end of this month.  Fingers crossed.