Nik Stauskas is a King. Here is what he had to say about it.
New Kings guard Nik Stauskas joined the Sacramento media for a conference call after he was drafted with the No. 8 pick on Thursday.
The well-spoken Michigan standout thinks he was the best perimeter shooter in the draft and also believes he can improve defensively (the big knock on his game).
Below is what he had to say.
On what's going through his mind: "Just a lot of excitement, I've heard only good things about the city and organization, I know they've got a great young core there so I'm just really exited to get in and help this team win some games."
On the Kings current guard situation: "I think I can play multiple positions. I think moving forward in the NBA, I think I can play a little bit of one and also the two. And I know this team is kind of struggling shooting the ball and obviously that's probably the best part of my game to this point so knocking down shots and spreading the floor is definitely something I am excited to do for this team."
On where he can improve defensively: "I can improve defensively and I also can improve my body and putting on more strength and speed. I think that's going to come with time, I'm only 20 years old and I feel like I haven't fully grown into my body yet so I think that will come. Defensively, I think I can be a capable defender at the next level. You know, I know I'm going to have to put in a lot of work and effort, but that's been the case my whole career and I've made the necessary strides all the time."
On if his passing has been underrated: "I think that's the reason why teams have been intrigued with me this year in the draft is because I've made those improvements. I feel like I'm a smart basketball player. I have a high IQ for the game and I like making the right plays. So this year at Michigan I was extremely aggressive in the pick and roll and trying to get to the basket and a lot of times I would draw attention and that would lead to me kicking for open threes or dunks for our bigs so hopefully I can kind of bring that same skill into Sacramento."
On if he expected to go as high as he did: "Not necessarily, I knew coming in today that Sacramento was a possibility and I knew they felt strongly about me. To be honest, I feel like I bring a skillset that not many people have. I bring a skillset that is needed in the NBA so I really take pride in being the 8th pick in the draft and I'm not going to let them down."
On if the Kings talked to him during the Chicago workout: "I got a chance to sit down and talk with them and they only had good things to say about me so I think coming into today I knew that it was a possibility that it could work out."
On bringing Michigan coach's John Beilein style to the NBA: "The one thing I know about the league is that it is very ball screen oriented at this point and coach Beilein's offense is kind of like a pro team and we kind of operated only through ball screens so I got a chance to do that a lot this year and I feel like that's why I'm pretty confident that I could play a little point guard at the next level."
Feedback he got from the front office on a conference call: "Just that they were really excited about having me. Coach Malone told me that he's had his eye on me for a while now. He's really excited to work with me and he's excited to just get to work."
On if he felt he was the best perimeter shooter in the draft: "Definitely, without a doubt. As much as I've expanded my game over the last couple of years, shooting is definitely the thing I do best. I take pride in that. Coming in I feel like when I get my feet set and I get a good look at the basket there's not many people in the league that can knock down shots like I can."
On running the pick and roll with DeMarcus Cousins: "The pick and roll was something that I did a lot this year and DeMarcus Cousins is obviously a very talented big man and hopefully we can have a good bond, good chemistry together and hopefully we can play off each other pretty well."
On the handshake with his father after he was drafted: "That's just me and my dad having fun. I have a really special relationship with him and I'm really excited I got to share that moment with him. Last night we kind of planned to do something funny and the three goggles is something I've done throughout my career at Michigan and fans seemed to like it so I decided we would do that today."
On comparisons to Klay Thompson: "I think that's a pretty good comparison. I'm working to get my handle even better and put the ball on the floor more. Steph Curry is a guy that over the last couple of years I've really enjoyed watching and if I could emulate anyone, I'd probably emulate him, but obviously he brings a special skill that not many people have. But I think that as of right now, Klay is a guy that is a fair comparison."
On what Kings fans can expect from him: "I just hope Kings fans understand I'm extremely excited to get there and meet them and be a part of this organization. I've only heard great things and for those who don't know me, I'm a highly motivated kid. I've played with a chip on my shoulder my entire life and I'm really excited to just be a part of this. I've had a winning attitude my entire life and everywhere I've went I've been successful so I don't see why that can't happen moving forward so hopefully I can help this team get some wins."
Stauskas will be in Sacramento on Saturday.