Fox, Kings embracing NBA In-Season Tournament with win vs. Spurs

Fox, Kings embracing NBA In-Season Tournament with win vs. Spurs originally appeared on NBC Sports Bay Area

It was just another night for Kings guard De’Aaron Fox on Friday at Frost Bank Center.

In 41 minutes, Fox scored a season-high 43 points on 14-of-24 shooting, leading Sacramento to a 129-120 win over Victor Wembanyama and the San Antonio Spurs. Fox also tallied eight rebounds and seven assists and posted his third game this season scoring over 37 points.

With their fifth straight win, the Kings improved to 7-4 overall and 2-0 in the NBA In-Season Tournament, taking over first place in West Group C. The Kings and Minnesota Timberwolves both are 2-0, but Sacramento holds the edge in point differential (plus-16) and total points (234).

Sacramento is two games into the In-Season Tournament with two games remaining in group play – matchups against the Timberwolves and Golden State Warriors. Fox and the Kings, atop Group C, are embracing the NBA’s newest feature.

“It’s different. When I heard about it -- obviously, so many leagues around the world do it," Fox said Friday night. "So many soccer leagues around the world do it. For me, I was just interested to see how it would happen, how it would work. I’m not one of those guys that are like, ‘I think it’s dumb.’ Because I don’t. I think it could be interesting for this league.

“Almost every league in the world does some sort of in-season tournament, so I think it’s cool that the NBA is trying to implement it.”

Fox moved into first place among NBA scoring leaders, now averaging 32.2 points per game with his latest 43-point flurry.

His latest starring performance didn’t surprise Kings coach Mike Brown one bit.

“I don’t really marvel at it because it’s just who he is,” Brown told reporters after the game. “When you marvel at guys, it’s usually guys that do something extraordinary or out of their sphere. He’s capable. He’s that good.

“The only thing that surprises me is every list of these MVP things, I don’t see his name on it at all. That amazes me that I don’t see his name on that list. … I don’t have an answer for that one, but I know it’s wrong.”

It’s early for serious MVP talk, but when all is said and done, Fox is proving his name should be in the running for the league’s greatest individual honor.

The Kings will rest Saturday and continue their Texas two-step with a matchup against the Dallas Mavericks (9-3) on Sunday at American Airlines Center.