#3: Affecting the game in ways other than scoring
People know that Buddy Hield can shoot the ball with the best of them. Obviously, that will be the narrative surrounding him his whole career from a casual fan’s perspective. That being said, Hield is beginning to show signs of being a much better playmaker for his teammates. His 2.7 assists per game don’t exactly scream that he’s going to be the next iteration of Steve Nash, but he’s progressing in his pick-and-roll passing ability.
Bjelica and Hield have shown some nice rapport early in this campaign, with Hield delivering wrap-around passes on time, and that’s been huge for the Kings’ offense with the threat Cauley-Stein possesses as a cutter in transition and lob man. He’s received a number of dimes from Hield as well, and with Fox’s passing ability at the point guard position, having another playmaker on the floor is huge for the Kings, along with guards Bogdan Bogdanovic (who is now back from injury) and Frank Mason III.
Along with his passing coming along, Hield has been a very good rebounding guard. He’s third on the Sacramento Kings in rebounding with his 6.1 per game, and with him cleaning the glass, it’s fueled the transition attack frequently. He also gets some nice putbacks, like this one here against the Minnesota Timberwolves.
Buddy Hield = All Effort ? pic.twitter.com/oeKgtUerMO
— Kings on NBCS (@NBCSKings) November 10, 2018
In addition, Hield has been a good team defender, as he’s usually in the right position to help out on the weak side, and he gets a fair amount of hustle blocks. Right now, he’s averaging an impressive 0.6 blocks per game, and does a good job of closing out to shooters. Having a 6-foot-9 wingspan is key for him.
The Sacramento Kings have a budding star in Buddy Hield (yes, I had to).