Kings coach Dave Joerger really likes his young duo of De’Aaron Fox and Marvin Bagley, but he put some serious pressure on the pair with his comments Monday.
Before Sacramento took the floor against the Timberwolves, Joerger compared the Fox-Bagley combo to former league MVPs Russell Westbrook and Kevin Durant.
“When we drafted Marvin at two, we were high-fiving like crazy. We got the right guy for us and where we’re going to be,” Joerger told reporters (via NBC Sports). “This isn’t going to be a story in three days and it will definitely be buried five years from now when we have the next (Kevin) Durant, (Russell) Westbrook, because that’s how good they are going to be. They are both going to be in the All-Star game and we’re going to be deep in the playoffs and I’m excited about that. I like where we are and love (where) we’re going.”
It’s good to believe in your guys, but this comparison seems a bit premature for Joerger. Fox is enjoying a nice second season averaging 17.9 points and 7.3 assists, and Bagley’s 12.7 points per game is fifth among rookies, but let’s remember how good Durant and Westbrook were in Oklahoma City.
In 2008-09, Westbrook’s rookie season and Durant’s second, Durant averaged 25.3 points and 6.5 rebounds, while Westbrook averaged 15.3 points and 5.3 assists.
The numbers between Fox and Westbrook have a strong resemblance, but it’s Bagley who has some work to do to live up to his end of the bargain.
However, if Joerger is even close to being right, the Kings will be a fun team to watch for several years.