Langston Galloway was the least heralded of the names the Kings landed in the trade for DeMarcus Cousins, but that doesn’t mean the team hasn’t found value in the third-year point guard.
In three of the Kings’ last four wins, Galloway has played a key role as coach Dave Joerger has found many uses for him.
“Sometimes he’s playing on the ball, sometimes he’s playing off the ball,” Joerger said. “Sometimes he’s dogging a point guard because he’s a very good defender and sometimes he’s playing a guy who’s 6-5 and running off screens. I appreciate the way he approaches every day of practice and every day of games.”
When the Kings play point guards Darren Collison and Ty Lawson, there are few minutes left for Galloway. As the Kings began sitting either Collison or Lawson, that opened up time for Galloway.
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I think he has a survivor mindset. ... That mindset that, ‘you know what, when I get my opportunity I’m going to be ready’ and he’s done that.
Kings coach Dave Joerger, on point guard Langston Galloway
In Tuesday’s win over Dallas, Collison and Lawson were both held out. Galloway had 15 points and seven rebounds as the starter.
Galloway averaged 20.4 minutes in 55 games with New Orleans. That’s dipped to 17.3 minutes in 15 appearances for Sacramento.
That hasn’t stopped him from having some good performances. He played the entire fourth quarter of the Kings’ 18-point, fourth-quarter comeback at the Los Angeles Clippers on March 26 and had 17 points off the bench in Saturday’s win at Minnesota.
Galloway said he’s always prepared to play. “Whenever he (Joerger) my name, I’m ready for the opportunity.”
Joerger said Galloway’s journey to the NBA helps him to fill in so well. He was undrafted out of Saint Joseph’s in 2014 and played for the Westchester Knicks of the NBA Development League for a season.
“I think he has a survivor mindset. ... That mindset that, ‘you know what, when I get my opportunity I’m going to be ready’ and he’s done that,” Joerger said. “He’s practiced hard, he’s worked hard and he’s been ready, keeping himself ready for whatever minutes may come.”
Galloway has a player option on his contract for next season worth $5.4 million. Collison and Lawson are both going to be free agents and the Kings could use a draft pick on a point guard.
If Galloway is on the roster next season, he would be a player with experience that the coaching staff knows.
Galloway’s approach isn’t going to change. Joerger likes Galloway’s offense as he’s shooting 48.3 percent from 3-point range for the Kings.
“I just try to keep it simple,” Galloway said. “I’m always confident. I feel like every shot is going in for me. I just stay ready for my opportunity, that’s all.”