Sacramento Kings point guard De’Aaron Fox certainly models his game after Russell Westbrook’s, but he’s not his childhood hero, as Fox points out.
There are a lot of similarities between De’Aaron Fox and Russell Westbrook, and there are always rising tensions when the Sacramento Kings face off against one of Westbrook’s teams. Both players are explosive and are among the most athletic in the league, but the trait that makes them most alike one another is the one that separates them from the rest of the leagues’ athletes: blinding speed.
In the 2019-’20 version of the NBA General Manager Survey, Fox received 64% of the votes in the “who is the fastest player in the league” poll, with Westbrook coming in at 25%. The cameras can barely keep up with the action when the two play head to head.
So it comes as no surprise that Fox models his game after Westbrook’s, but don’t you dare call him his hero.
James Ham of NBCSports California published an article on Friday morning that posed the hypothetical question of who would win in a game of one on one between the two speedsters. He posted a tweet about the piece that read, “De’Aaron Fox’s childhood hero was Russell Westbrook. But could the protégé take down the master in a game of one-on-one?”
Less than a half hour later, Fox retweeted the original tweet from Ham with his own little caption included:
There is a big difference, especially now that these are two guys that have high-octane battles at the highest possible level. A hero is someone you look up to, and shaking that mentality can be difficult. Fox must enter each battle with the mentality that he is the better player, whether he is or not, and keeping someone on a “hero” pedestal could potentially derail that thought process.
In his one game against Westbrook’s Houston Rockets in 2019-’20, Fox scored 31 points, grabbed 9 rebounds, and dished out 6 assists. Westbrook had 28, 7, and 6.
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