Phil Ford was a point guard who played for the Kansas City Kings from 1978-82. He was never one to stand out of the average stat sheet, but he was able to bring a level of consistency to the court, a valued trait for a primary ballhandler tasked with running an offensive system.
While a good number of rookies need time to play through trial and error in order to develop enough to contribute at a high level, Ford had no such problems as the second overall pick in the 1978 NBA Draft. He came in right away and averaged 15.9 points, 8.6 assists and 2.2 steals per game en route to the Rookie of the Year award, and he’d hover around those numbers for the majority of his time in Kansas City.
He brought a certain level of entertainment to the basketball court, almost as if he was just as interested in putting on a show for the fans as he was winning the actual game with an array of spin moves and dribbling exhibitions.
Whereas most point guards get labeled as either scorers or assist-men, Ford appeared to find a nice balance between the two, always in attack mode looking for the bucket, but also aware of how any given moment was playing out enough to make the right pass to an open teammate.
He’d go on to play for a few other teams over the course of his career, but due to his tremendous leadership abilities with the ball in his hands and what he brought to the table for that franchise and none other, Phil Ford will always be remembered as a King.