Even though the Detroit Pistons are very interested in re-signing Jose Calderon, but the Spanish point guard is making his free agency visits around the league, with the Sacramento King possibly being the strongest in pursuit.
Isiah Thomas, at 5’9, isn’t the point guard of the future for the Kings, who are seeking an immediate upgrade at a number of positions, including at point guard. Thomas did average 13.9 points last season, but he’s a shoot-first kind of player, which the Kings, quite frankly, have enough of in pretty much every position.
Calderon is well known for being very efficient offensively, shooting 49.1% from the field last season, including 46.1% (best in the NBA) from beyond the arc while still being a pass-first kind of point guard, with a career average of 7.2, going along with only 1.7 turnovers per game.
He is 31, and made over $11 million on the final season of his contract as the Raptors traded him to Detroit, and he isn’t likely to get that kind of money if it’s a long-term deal he’s after. When teams look at his injury record, seeing the last time he played over 73 games was in 2007-2008, they’ll get to the same conclusion.
Jorge Sierra of HoopsHype.com reports that Calderon will meet with a number of the Kings’ brass today, from owner Vivek Ranadive and general manager Pete D’Alessandro to head coach Mike Malone as well as Chris Mullin. Houston and Dallas are also looking to see if they can add Calderon, but most think that the 31 year old will choose the team where he can have the more significant role and make the most money, ignoring the contender factor.
Calderon has spent most of his eight seasons in the NBA playing for the Toronto Raptors, averaging 10.1 points and 7.2 assists per game. Along with his efficiency and passing abilities, he’s also known for being quite a soft defender, earning him the nickname a “poor man’s Steve Nash.”