Sacramento Kings weekly rookie roundup: March 18 to 24

NEW ORLEANS, LA - JANUARY 30: Justin Jackson
NEW ORLEANS, LA - JANUARY 30: Justin Jackson /

The Sacramento Kings had a surprise rookie emerge with a fantastic week despite some off-court turmoil. Who is atop this week’s Rookie Roundup?

The Sacramento Kings experienced a week that was bigger than basketball for their city.  This space is tragically ill-equipped to discuss the ramifications of the Stephon Clark protests that kept all but a few hundred fans from entering Golden 1 Center on Thursday night.  However, amidst all that, a surprise player emerged with a career game.  In a short, strange week, who is atop the Rookie Roundup?

(The Rookie Roundup defines the week as Sunday-Saturday.  Thus, this report only takes into consideration the game against the Pistons and the game versus the Hawks.  We can deal with Terry Rozier lighting the Kings up next week, thanks.)

Justin Jackson

Weekly Stats: 17.5 ppg, 3.0 rpg, 0.5 apg, 0.5 stls, 0.0 blks, 82.3% FG, 83.3% 3PT, 100.0% FT

Season to Date: 6.7 ppg, 2.7 rpg, 1.0 apg, 0.4 stls, 0.2 blks, 46.0% FG, 32.2% 3PT, 70.6% FT

Small sample size alert, but this was a crazy good week for Justin Jackson.  82% shooting over two games is insane, and not something I ever expected from him.  The game against the Hawks was a night surrounded by nearly impossible circumstances, but Jackson stepped up big time.  He put in 20 points on just eight shots, and he got his points in a variety of ways.  He was four of four from 3-point range and was able to get his midrange and penetration going as well.

Related Story: Alize Johnson could be the steal of the draft for the Kings

I’m consistently impressed with Jackson’s ability to score in a variety of ways.  He was phenomenal against the Hawks as I mentioned.  He had a similar game against the Pistons too.  Jackson is a role player that knows his role and relishes playing within it.  With that, he gets the ultimate reward: the top spot of the Rookie Roundup.

Frank Mason

Weekly Stats: 11.5 ppg, 6.0 rpg, 5.0 apg, 1.0 stls, 0.5 blks, 47.6% FG, 25.0% 3PT, 66.7% FT

Season to Date: 8.0 ppg, 2.5 rpg, 2.9 apg, 0.8 stls, 0.2 blks, 38.8% FG, 38.2% 3PT, 82.2% FT

Jackson’s insane shooting notwithstanding, Frank Mason could have easily been the Rookie of the Week this time around if not for a somewhat forgettable game against Detroit.  Against the Hawks, however, he nearly put in a triple-double (16, seven and eight for those keeping scores).  Mason continues to provide a well-rounded game and a hustle that Sacramento fans are known for appreciating.  It’s guys like him that make you want the Kings to be good ASAP.  Mason as a backup point guard on a contending squad seems to be the role he was born to fill.  Let’s hope he gets to do it in purple someday soon.

Bogdan Bogdanovic

Weekly Stats: 11.0 ppg, 2.0 rpg, 3.0 apg, 0.0 stls, 0.0 blks, 66.7% FG, 0.0 3PT, 100.0% FT

Season to Date: 11.8 ppg, 2.9 rpg, 3.3 apg, 0.9 stls, 0.2 blks, 44.7% FG, 39.7% 3PT, 85.6% FT

Bogdan Bogdanovic only suited up for one game this week, which bumped him down a tad.  However, in his one game, he put him what for him was a relatively average night.  He continues to be a leader on the court for the Kings, and his shooting remains efficient (his TS% stands at .559, which is in the high range of average).  Good work, Bogi.

De’Aaron Fox

Weekly Stats: 10.0 ppg, 4.0 rpg, 4.0 apg, 0.5 stls, 0.0 blks, 40.9% FG, 0.0% 3PT, 40.0% FT

Season to Date: 11.4 ppg, 2.6 rpg, 4.3 apg, 1.0 stls, 0.3 blks, 41.5% FG, 32.3% 3PT, 71.8% FT

Although already established that De’Aaron Fox thrives in the clutch and always makes a highlight play or two, there are reasons to be concerned about his game at this point.  His true shooting percentage, for example, has plummeted to .482, which is not great. In specific individual contests one can indicate that his jumper can improve (or at the very least, find other ways to contribute), but overall, that’s pretty uninspiring.

Next: De'Aaron Fox's mid-season report card

His shooting percentage sits at 41.5%, and this week, he underachieved even more.  Fox scored only 20 points off of 22 shots in an overall uninspiring pair of games.  I still believe that Fox’s toolset can make him a borderline All-Star one day, but weeks like this will have to be the exception rather than the rule.