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Tyreke Tuesdays: Evans shines despite Kings’ woes

Posted by rc360 on February 23, 2010

Despite the Sacramento Kings going 0-4 since the All-Star break, Tyreke Evans is performing consistently.

The rookie guard from the University of Memphis averaged 17.8 points, 5.5 rebounds, 6.8 assists and one steal per game since the break. For the week, his shooting percentage was 51.9 percent.

Evans is ranked first among rookies playing 36.9 minutes per game and is No. 24 in the NBA The year before at Memphis he was playing 29 minutes per game.

Having extended playing time isn’t the only change Evans has encountered since joining the Kings. His body has taken a beating with injuries as well.

He’s fought with a nagging ankle injury throughout the season and suffered a hard fall on his chest, sprained his finger and a hip injury more recently. So far, he’s only missed five games and despite the injuries, has been the best rookie this season.

Evans outperformed Boston Celtics All-Star point guard Rajon Rondo with a near triple-double with 17 points, 11 rebounds and 7 assists – all that in 41 minutes, but the Kings still lost, 95-92.

The next night the Kings traveled to Oakland to play against the Golden State Warriors. Evans posted 17 points, 10 assists, 5 rebounds and 3 steals, but the Kings were blown out, losing 130-98.

After the game, Evans’ teammates Kevin Martin and Hilton Armstrong were traded to the Houston Rockets and Sergio Rodriguez was traded to the New York Knicks, just hours before the trade deadline.

In return, the Kings received Carl Landry and Joey Dorsey from the Houston Rockets, Larry Hughes from the New York Knicks and Dominic McGuire from the Washington Wizards. Kings forward Kenny Thomas was waived soon after, while Hughes remains on the east coast to rehabilitate his fractured left hand.

After the trade, the new-look Kings team traveled to Los Angeles to play the L.A. Clippers on Saturday for another back-to-back game.

Evans helped the Kings go on a 30-19 run in the second half to bring the team within five points of the Clippers. He scored 11 of his 21 points during that run and logged 40 minutes, but the Kings came up short again, losing 99-89.

The next night against the Phoenix Suns in Phoenix, Evans finished with 16 points and 6 assists, but all-star point guard Steve Nash was too much as he dished out 17 assists in the Suns’ 104-88 win.

The Kings finished the road trip with a 18-38 win-loss record and Evans averaged four turnovers per game.

The team will have time to mesh with its new players with the next three games at home. They’ll take on the Detroit Pistons today, followed by the Utah Jazz and the Clippers.

Click here to read the story on Sacramento Press.

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