SACRAMENTO, Calif. – Lottery-bound Brandon Knight opened his tour of individual workouts Thursday by conceding teams have directly questioned whether he can be a playmaking point guard, the most pressing concern about his game after a freshman season at Kentucky.
Addressing the doubts before the June 23 draft may not be easy. The debut in front of the Kings basketball operations staff, and about a dozen media members as a black curtain was raised for the final 10 minutes, was Knight working one-on-none as arranged by his representatives, running drills against a pair of retired players when the team obviously would have preferred the usual three-on-three setting. (Terribly important assessment off the 10 minutes: If Shareef Abdur-Rahim or Bobby Jackson defend him every game, Knight is a first-ballot Hall of Famer.)
That Knight visited the Kings at all, especially this early, is a mild surprise – they pick seventh and chances he will still be on the board are slim, with No. 3 to the Jazz or No. 5 to the Raptors the more-likely outcomes. He said he will be in Toronto next, but did not know if that will also be going solo or against competition. He did know about the doubts from teams over whether he can be more than a scoring point guard.
“I’ve gotten the question, ‘Am I a true point guard?’ ” Knight said of informal meetings with clubs at the pre-draft combine in Chicago late last month. “Obviously my answer is yes. I think I was able to prove that this past season, as I developed into a guy that can facilitate and run a team.”
He admitted the disproving the reputation is “kind of hard to do in an individual workout.” And so the doubt lives on.