How can a guy that’s averaging 15.3 PPG be struggling? Well, that’s just it. Evans won rookie of the year a few years ago in a season that established him as a young star. Unfortunately for him, he’s not thriving to the best of his ability in Sacramento. The Kings are a good team with depth, but I don’t believe Tyreke Evans belongs with them.
Since that rookie year, all of his numbers are down: his assists have gone down by almost 1, his points down by almost 2, and his rebounds are down as well. For a guy that’s supposed to be versatile, he hasn’t been playing as well as he ought to. The Kings found gold when they drafted Evans, but ever since then, he hasn’t been doing much to help Sacramento end their playoff drought.
The reason he is struggling is because of Isaiah Thomas, the second year PG. Don’t get me wrong, Thomas is a great PG who can score, shoot, and pass the ball, but he and Tyreke Evans don’t work well together. Until the Kings see this, they won’t truly flourish: they could get someone valuable for Evans, someone who can fit better in Smart’s new system.
Here are some reasons:
1. Evans Doesn’t Have Control:
When Evans was a point guard his rookie season, he was able to attack the basket quite effectively, and make the right decisions. Instead, he is forced to come off of screens instead of running the fast break. Without control of the basketball, Evans cannot make a decisive move to the rim, because the defense is already set. As for assist numbers, it’s hard to create for others when he isn’t on the attack.
2. Thomas Takes Up Some Scoring:
Thomas isn’t the best scorer in the league, of cou
rse, but he’s still averaging around 13 PPG. As of late, in fact, he’s been averaging around 17.0 PPG and is looking more like a scoring PG. This is exactly what Tyreke Evans did. Now that Thomas has control of the ball, he runs the offense the way he likes. Some Kings benefit, but Tyreke is one of those guys who just doesn’t click with Thomas. Usually, they don’t each have big games.
3. Evans Doesn’t Live on the Perimeter:
With Thomas driving to the basket and controlling the offense, he is free to kick the ball to Evans, who is a terrible perimeter shooter. He would much rather take it to the cup that try and shoot a three pointer. Unfortunately for him, unless the game is on the line, he isn’t given the freedom to drive to the basket. When team’s defenses are set, he sometimes resorts to an 18 footer, which doesn’t usually go down for him.