Isaiah Thomas knew he’d succeed. All he needed was a chance.
“I expected this out of me if I was given the opportunity,” said the Kings point guard, reflecting on his rookie season following Thursday night’s finale against the Los Angeles Lakers. “Coach gave me the opportunity and I took it and ran with it. Can’t thank him enough and my teammates.”
Thanks to his existing skill-set as a lead guard, Thomas made a seamless transition from college to the NBA. So what’s next? How does last year’s 60th overall pick plan to follow-up a rookie season that nobody didn’t saw coming?
“I want to get better at everything,” said the 23-year-old guard. “I wanna come back just a more complete player. And I want people to really look at me and be, ‘Oh, he’s gotten better at everything. He’s really worked on his game.’”
Fellow teammate Jimmer Fredette isn’t limiting what he can improve either. The Kings rookie guard told media after Tuesday’s game he plans to keep working on becoming a true point guard.
“Screen and roll things, keeping my dribble alive, getting the shot up a little bit quicker, working on floaters and everything,” said Fredette.
Last year’s 10th pick had an underwhelming season by most critics’ standards. But unlike Thomas, Fredette made a transition to a brand new position. No communication with coaches during the lockout and lack of practice time during the season didn’t help Fredette’s cause.
“It’s all about just a learning process,” said Fredette. ”Getting better. Having a really young team with this short and condensed season, we just didn’t get off to a great start and that’s what hurts you.
“I felt like we’re continuing to get better, getting to know each other more as a group,” he added. ”But it’s all about this offseason now and working as hard as we can to get back and be better next year.”
Despite his struggles, the heralded rookie out of BYU said his first NBA season was fun.
“You’re playing basketball,” he said. “Something that you love to do. It was a great time this year and (I’m) looking forward to an even better year next year.”
Terrence Williams seeks three-year deal
Terrence Williams wants to remain a King. But, the versatile forward has his price.
“I want at least a three-year deal,” Williams told Cowbell Kingdom after Thursday’s game. “I don’t know the number. I don’t know what I’m worth. I don’t know what my per 48 (minutes) on the court is. That’s up to my agent and the guys here.”
Williams says the Kings are his number one option when he hits the free agent market come July. He’s happy with the role he carved out during his short stint after signing in Sacramento following the trade deadline. Williams believes the Kings are a good fit for him as continues to move forward with his career.
“I definitely could see myself as being a closer and just being a key guy off the bench or a starter,” the 24-year-old swingman said. “Whatever (is needed) for them.”
Per 36 minutes, Williams averaged 15.5 points, 5.4 assists and 7.2 rebounds over the course of 18 games with the Kings.