Whatever happens now in the playoffs, De’Aaron Fox will have completed an unforgettable 2022/23 season, between his marriage during the last off-season and the birth of his first child, as well as his sporting exploits, rewarded by a first selection in the All-Star Game, a historic qualification Sacramento in the playoffs, and the trophy for the most “clutch” player, awarded this week.
Most decisive player this season with 194 points scored in close matches this season (53% shooting success), the Kings point guard confirmed his status in the first two games of all playoffs, with 13 points recorded in the “money time”. Before Game 3, he came back to this specialty that he developed thanks to his mind and his way of approaching this specific situation.
“I think it’s more a question of mentality than work”, said “Fourth Quarter Fox”. “Everyone wants to be in a position to put the winning basket, but when that moment comes, if you are really ready, it will show. You shouldn’t be afraid to fail. If I miss, that’s fine with me, because I know that if the opportunity arises again, I will have a chance to succeed.
A lot of work
De’Aaron Fox did not only rely on this mental strength to shine at the end of the match, he obviously put all the chances on his side by inflicting a daily work started last summer, even if it means interrupting his honeymoon so he could continue his training regimen.
At his side, he also benefited from the dedication of his personal assistant, Luke Loucks, with whom Mike Brown had worked at Golden State and whom he hired shortly after his arrival in Sacramento.
“Luke has worked with him since day one”recalled Mike Brown, who then explained how his assistant was doing to advance De’Aaron Fox, by putting him in a situation according to very specific scenarios. “You face a hold and you have to do this to avoid it, or you have to do this when you pass your first defender, with different ways he had to react depending on the situation. This creativity that Luke brought helped him to be ready. There is also the fact that he has experienced this role all his life, being the number one player in his team. It helped him to be successful in critical moments.
How to read the stats? MJ = matches played; Min = Minutes; Shots = Shots made / Shots attempted; 3pts = 3-points / 3-points attempted; LF = free throws made / free throws attempted; Off = offensive rebound; Def= defensive rebound; Tot = Total bounces; Pd = assists; Fte: Personal fouls; Int = Intercepts; Bp = Lost bullets; Ct: Counters; Points = Points.