Is it going to be Marco Belinelli, Ben McLemore or Darren Collison? We’re about two weeks from the beginning of a new NBA season, and the Sacramento Kings are still finding out who their starting shooting guard is going to be.
George Karl is testing different pairings next to Rajon Rondo in preseason, hoping that something clicks and he’ll recognize it immediately. Right now it does look like Collison, a point guard himself who has played next to other point guards in the past and provides a very different style and set of abilities than Rondo, who might be everything George Karl wants in a point guard, but does provide a very limited skill set.
Collison averaged 16.1 points per game as the team’s point guard last season, but everyone seems to prefer the ball being out of his hands and let someone else run the offense. Marco Belinelli, signed over the offseason after he left the San Antonio Spurs, might be the best option in terms of the offense he can create right now. He’s not used to a big role (or at least didn’t have one for a while) but he has shown that with big minutes he can put up some nice numbers. And the Kings have plenty of scoring through Rudy Gay and DeMarcus Cousins. What they need is balance, and consistent shooting; not necessarily a star scorer.
The third option is the starter from last season, Ben McLemore. Supposedly he has the bigger upside, obviously being the younger guy. But the Kings expected him to be a bit further along entering his third season. He showed improvement in his sophomore year, averaging 12.1 points per game and shooting a lot better with 43.7% from the field and 35.8% from beyond the arc, but he’s no longer looked at as a big part of the franchise’s future.
While Belinelli and Collison are both used to providing offense and energy off the bench, McLemore has been a starter for most of his two years in the league. He might also be the best investment, even if it means a little bit more growing pains. Unless the trade rumors are true regarding the former Kansas star, keeping him in the lineup might be the best route for Karl to go down.