After running a historically good offense and breaking the longest playoff drought in league history last season, the Kings are off to a slow start. Right now, they are sitting in ninth place in the West with a 3-4 record.
They have been struggling with injuries to De’Aaron Fox and Trey Lyles as well as with their shooting. Their last overtime win against the Portland Trail Blazers marked a step in the right direction, but the Kings still have plenty of work to do.
So, let’s look at three Kings whose stocks are skyrocketing and two that are fading fast.
Skyrocketing: De’Aaron Fox
De’Aaron Fox had to sit out the last four games with an ankle sprain. Before that, he averaged 31.3 points, 4.3 rebounds, 6 assists, and 1.3 steals—huge numbers without which the Kings apparently struggle to win.
His absence was glaring, even in the Kings’ lone win over this stretch so far. Without Fox there to push the pace and get things going, the offense looks disjointed and slow. The energy was just different, and Domantas Sabonis failed to be that second All-Star who could carry the team until Wednesday’s game.
His absence so far just proved how important Fox is to the Kings’ success. Without him, they might not be going very far.
He should be back soon, however, and if he continues to play the way he did before the injury, his stock will only continue to rise.