De’Aaron Fox, Kings Focused on Defensive Improvement Heading Into 2021-22

As we head into the 2021-22 NBA season, many stars across the League are excited to take their game to another level, and Sacramento Kings point guard De’Aaron Fox gladly counts himself among that number.

During rounds up with the media, the 23-year-old point guard was vocal about becoming a better defensive player, despite commonly being heralded as one of the better defensive point guards in the League.

“I know that I have to be more consistent on that end of the floor from the first quarter to the fourth quarter,” Fox started to the group of local reporters.

“For the last few years, I’ve been near the top of the League in deflections and steals but it’s a lot more than that; it’s a lot more than just getting your hands on balls.”

Fox experienced a breakout season last year, averaging a career-high 25.2 points, 7.2 assists and 1.5 steals per game while shooting 47.7 percent from the field.

However, despite Fox’s reputation as a defensive stud, the Kings’ defensive rating (per 100 possessions) when Fox was on the floor fell to 118, the worst in franchise history. When Fox was off the court, the team’s rating was rated 10th overall (111.8).

Consequently, in the 2021 NBA Draft, Sacramento targeted Baylor guard Davion Mitchell with a top-10 pick. Mitchell became a household name during the 2021 NCAA Tournament thanks to his impressive defensive performance for the Bears.

With Mitchell (6’2”) and second-year guard Tyrese Haliburton (6’5”) both capable of holding their own on the perimeter, Fox’s improvements on that end could work wonders for a team looking to end a 16-season playoff drought.

Especially as, at 6’3,” Fox is a player who could legitimately play extensive minutes beside those two guards.