With the eighth pick in the 2014 NBA Draft the Sacramento Kings have selected guard Nik Stauskas out of Michigan.
“This is a huge honor for me,” Stauskas said. “This is something I’ve been working towards since I was 7 years old. I’m excited to be a member of the Sacramento Kings. I’ve only heard good things about the city and the organization. So I’m excited to get to work and help this team win.”
The Kings decided to go safe and take a prospect that has a very known skill in all of college basketball: the ability to shoot and hit the three pointer. While Stauskas may not have the hype surrounding him as many of the projected lottery prospects, he has a fully developed offensive game capped with one of the best shooting strokes in the draft.
“Immediately, I think I can be a guy that comes in and helps stretch the floor and knock down shots for them,” Stauskas said. “So I’m excited to do that.”
Stauskas burst onto the scene as a sophomore at Michigan after being part of the run that led them to the NCAA championship his freshman. As the go-to player for the Wolverines, Stauskas increased his scoring to 17.5 points a game while improving his mid-range game and driving ability to go with his scorching 44 percent three-point shooting range. Stauskas possesses an amazing basketball I.Q. and always seems to make the right decision on the court and takes smart, effective shots.
“I think over the summer coming into my sophomore year, I added a lot of strength and speed and athleticism, which helped me kind of be more versatile this year,” Stauskas said. “At the same time, I feel like I’ve just made a lot of strides on my mental game and just being more confident in myself and believing in myself, you know, even when things aren’t going my way. I think those are the two biggest keys for me, as well as Coach (John) Beilein and the rest of the coaching staff there, they did a phenomenal job of putting me in the right spots and the right positions to be successful.”
After taking guard Ben McLemore last year with higher potential, it will be interesting to see how the minutes are distributed between the two. The one thing the Kings can rely on with Stauskas is his great shooting touch that won’t go away at the next level. He could be a huge addition to the Kings bench next season, especially if his all-around game continues to improve as it did this past year.
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