Welcome Davion Mitchell

Yeah, there's a pretty giant gap between 20th ranked defense in the NBA and the worst defensive season of all-time. The offense was legit good for most of the year and there's still upside on that bone with Fox/Hali and maybe even longer shots like Bagley/Metu/King still improving. There's no reason with TD/Harkless/Len/Mitchell/TT defensive upgrades this team can't be in that 18-22 range defensively. Especially if Mitchell comes out the gate as a unicorn perimeter defender.
That may be best case scenario but even if we move 5 rankings up from where we were last year, that’s prolly enough to win 5-7 more games. Hopefully enough to make the play-in (even though I’m anti play-in lol)
 
What you're saying has merit, but I really do think Fox is a bad individual defender. He falls asleep way too often when defending off ball, often ball watching, and his man takes advantage. When on ball he is essentially a sieve most of the time. Granted, this is true of most of our players, there are way too many times Fox doesn't stay in front of his man. As is always said about him, I think he has the tools to be a good defender, but just isn't right now. At least not consistently.
And I think you have to allow him to defend to his strengths before you can judge. Off the ball is all about help defense and I'm not sure off the ball oriented help defense unless you are cheating into passing lanes is very wise if you are running lineups too big in the front court and too small in the back to switch. Now, if they let him use his obvious physical/athletic skills and he is still slacking then we can start forming a true opinion.
 
Yeah, there's a pretty giant gap between 20th ranked defense in the NBA and the worst defensive season of all-time. The offense was legit good for most of the year and there's still upside on that bone with Fox/Hali and maybe even longer shots like Bagley/Metu/King still improving. There's no reason with TD/Harkless/Len/Mitchell/TT defensive upgrades this team can't be in that 18-22 range defensively. Especially if Mitchell comes out the gate as a unicorn perimeter defender.
I honestly think you - and many - are being too modest in your expectations of this team's defensive improvement this coming season. I *expect* them to be middle-of-the-road (13-17), w/real potential for better.
 
Last edited:
I honestly think you - and many - are being too modest in your expectations of what this team's defensive improvement this coming season. I *expect* them to middle-of-the-road (13-17), w/real potential for better.
if we do that we’d prolly be a 6th seed at least. It’s more likely we would move up 5 rankings (good enough for a handful more wins) then going from worst to the middle IMO
 
And I think you have to allow him to defend to his strengths before you can judge. Off the ball is all about help defense and I'm not sure off the ball oriented help defense unless you are cheating into passing lanes is very wise if you are running lineups too big in the front court and too small in the back to switch. Now, if they let him use his obvious physical/athletic skills and he is still slacking then we can start forming a true opinion.
Specifically on the topic of offball defense for Fox, it has nothing to do with his help D, and everything to do with him simply relaxing, ball watching and letting his man roam away from him for an open layup or 3. As you know, all it takes is a 1-2 second lapse in the NBA and the other team now has an open shot while you're scrambling to recover.
 
Specifically on the topic of offball defense for Fox, it has nothing to do with his help D, and everything to do with him simply relaxing, ball watching and letting his man roam away from him for an open layup or 3. As you know, all it takes is a 1-2 second lapse in the NBA and the other team now has an open shot while you're scrambling to recover.
He does a bit, but so does everyone else. The Kings help back scheme is basically them always preparing to slide over and leave their man open as result. They are trying to defend in space. Davion did the same thing when they went to the help scheme in that Hornets game. Once a defender is behind you you're toast.
 
He does a bit, but so does everyone else. The Kings help back scheme is basically them always preparing to slide over and leave their man open as result. They are trying to defend in space. Davion did the same thing when they went to the help scheme in that Hornets game. Once a defender is behind you you're toast.
Meh call it as it is. Nobody makes excuses for Buddy letting his man go backdoor. Fox has a lot of mental lapses off the ball, he just also has the quickness to recover half the time.
 
Meh call it as it is. Nobody makes excuses for Buddy letting his man go backdoor. Fox has a lot of mental lapses off the ball, he just also has the quickness to recover half the time.
The difference with Buddy is twofold. 1. He loses his man no matter what defensive scheme they are playing. 2. He doesn't simply let them go backdoor. There are many times when he is guarding a 3pt. Shooter & loses him only for his man to be in the opposite corner taking a wide open 3.
 
The difference with Buddy is twofold. 1. He loses his man no matter what defensive scheme they are playing. 2. He doesn't simply let them go backdoor. There are many times when he is guarding a 3pt. Shooter & loses him only for his man to be in the opposite corner taking a wide open 3.
Point #2 is so bad that when it happens, very often, it looks like the open player is someone else’s responsibility.
 
The difference with Buddy is twofold. 1. He loses his man no matter what defensive scheme they are playing. 2. He doesn't simply let them go backdoor. There are many times when he is guarding a 3pt. Shooter & loses him only for his man to be in the opposite corner taking a wide open 3.
Same can be said about Fox, off ball. Difference is point guards don't usually end up spotting up for corner 3s. They usually get more top of the key/45 looks
 
Same can be said about Fox, off ball. Difference is point guards don't usually end up spotting up for corner 3s. They usually get more top of the key/45 looks
Fox rarely loses his man as badly as Buddy.
IMO, Fox has two main problems on defense. First, he struggles fighting through picks. As a result he tends to go under the pick most of the time. His speed helps him in this regard, but not enough of the time. I'm hoping that getting stronger will help him with this. Also, Mitchell is excellent at fighting through picks so hopefully he can teach Fox some tricks. Secondly, he gives too much space to his man, probably assuming he can use his speed & quickness to recover when needed. This allows his man to move around much too freely & also leads to Fox losing him when his attention lapses. This is easily corrected.

I think Fox floats on defense to conserve his energy. Hopefully with added depth he will no longer feel the need to do so. Because when Fox is locked in defensively, he is really good.
 
Fox routinely played pressure full-court defense at Kentucky. I had hoped this would translate to the NBA but it doesn't look like that was a point of emphasis for him in his rookie year and his levels of defensive focus and intensity have diminished year-to-year as his offensive workload increased. Compared to the rest of the team he doesn't stand out statistically as being particularly good or particularly bad. I suspect it's mostly an issue of motivation and effort with him. When he's been asked to defend PGs one-on-one he does a good job but he does tend to get lost in coverage off the ball.

I also think the coverage scheme we've employed is itself a big part of the problem. Asking everyone to play tighter man-to-man coverage would eliminate a lot of the unnecessary switching and make it easier for our guards to key in on defending just one assignment. Bottom line is that I don't think Fox will be a liability on defense if the rest of the team is filled out with plus defenders. I think he'll rise to the challenge of matching their intensity level. (Probably not Davion's specifically cause no one will match that, but something respectably close to it at least)
 
Last edited:
if we do that we’d prolly be a 6th seed at least. It’s more likely we would move up 5 rankings (good enough for a handful more wins) then going from worst to the middle IMO
They weren't the same defensive team after acquiring Harkless, Davis, Wright and Jones - who came 2/3rd of the way thru the season - as they were before. And they won't be nearly the same with Len, TT, Mitchell, and Coach Christie in the mix compared to the end of the last season.

Integrating Christie's teaching and building chemistry may take a minute, but not long. You'll see.
 
They weren't the same defensive team after acquiring Harkless, Davis, Wright and Jones - who came 2/3rd of the way thru the season - as they were before. And they won't be nearly the same with Len, TT, Mitchell, and Coach Christie in the mix compared to the end of the last season.

Integrating Christie's teaching and building chemistry may take a minute, but not long. You'll see.
ive been a Kings fan long enough to never assume the best outcome is gonna happen lol. “You’ll see” basically has never happened for this franchise.
 
I don’t see how you can keep Davion out of the starting line up very long. He’s going to have to be on the floor guarding the hottest starting 1 or 2 every night.

The Kings are going to be employing a lot of 3 guard lineups this year. I hope Hali is hitting the weights, because he’s going to have to play the swing (SF/SG) position, with Davion in there with Fox in the back court.
 
Its not just the defense Davion brings individually. Its that his defensive intensity is infectious. I watched the entire game. When teammates see what Davion is doing, they feel compelled to do the same. They may not have his defensive instincts, etc., but the effort will be there. Conversely, when you see a teammate play with no effort on defense you think to yourself "why should i bother to play D if no one else is". We all know he is not a great fit positionally, but he is a great fit with the attitude he brings and its potential effect on the team.
 
I don’t see how you can keep Davion out of the starting line up very long. He’s going to have to be on the floor guarding the hottest starting 1 or 2 every night.

The Kings are going to be employing a lot of 3 guard lineups this year. I hope Hali is hitting the weights, because he’s going to have to play the swing (SF/SG) position, with Davion in there with Fox in the back court.
Hali isn’t guarding any of the larger small forwards like George, Leonard, James or even Wiggins.
 
Its not just the defense Davion brings individually. Its that his defensive intensity is infectious. I watched the entire game. When teammates see what Davion is doing, they feel compelled to do the same. They may not have his defensive instincts, etc., but the effort will be there. Conversely, when you see a teammate play with no effort on defense you think to yourself "why should i bother to play D if no one else is". We all know he is not a great fit positionally, but he is a great fit with the attitude he brings and its potential effect on the team.
Great post, couldn't agree more. It's really nice to see, and the combination of what Davion Mitchell and Tyrese bring to team chemistry should complement each other very, very nicely.
 
Last night's game was too late for me so I could only watch highlights this morning. Looks like Davion had another solid outing, both offensively and defensively?
I know Mitchell weighs more than WIlliams, but it's still damn impressive when he's surrendering like 7-8 inches and is locking him up. Mitchell is making it his life's goal to terrorize fellow lottery picks.

I'll be honest, I just can't remember seeing a guard dominate on defense the way he has so far in summer league. It stands out so much when he has a so-so stat line at half (8 pts 2 rebounds 1 assist, 2 steals 3 of 9 shooting), but is still the best player on the floor by a wide margin because of his defensive dominance. He turned it on in the 2nd half with his shot looking so clean.