Evans was seen as every bit the franchise player the Kings needed, a wonderful combo guard with size that could score, distribute and create. He battled toe injuries last season, but he's healthy now, yet still hasn't really gotten back on track or began to live up to the bar he set for himself.
He hasn't fit into really any system, he stops the ball and he doesn't work well off it. He's an isolation player that needs a very specific offensive structure and willing teammates to be successful.
As a result, the Kings have made their once cornerstone available, according to the Sac Bee:
Kings executives will entertain trade offers for Tyreke Evans this summer, and they should.That's the thing -- how does Evans fit? The Kings just drafted Jimmer Fredette 10th overall, have a potential star on the block in DeMarcus Cousins and some cap space and assets. The opportunity is there to improve if the team can just figure itself out. And that starts with Evans. he's got to figure out where he's most effective and how he fits. The Bee has this quote from someone that would know:
Evans remains a major asset. His team remains in a major funk. When a franchise finishes near the conference cellar for six consecutive seasons, the general manager needs to make significant personnel changes, or the franchise needs to change its general manager.
But that's an organizational decision.
Evans, who has a year remaining on his contract, has his own decision to make. He has to figure out what he wants and how badly he wants it. He has to determine what kind of player he wants to be and proceed accordingly, essentially controlling what he can control.
"I don't think it's any big secret," Princeton legend and longtime Kings consultant Pete Carril said the other night. "Tyreke's got to learn to play without the ball. It's all there. I see some games, and he looks very good. Other games … he just has to work harder. I'd love to see him develop a mid-range game."
Evans is obviously an exceptionally talented player. But it's often about fit and putting a player in a position to be successful. Clearly, something isn't working. The Kings were terrible yet again and there doesn't seem to be a way out right now. At least not with Evans as the "star" playing the role he's playing. Whether that means the Kings should trade him, shop him as a ploy to straighten him out or what, you can't make him untouchable. There's no harm in calling a mulligan and starting over. Especially when you can't really go any lower than the Kings already are.