Draft Watch: Williams, Kispert, Butler Meet With Kings
As the July 29th NBA Draft approaches, Sacramento is working out some noteworthy prospects
With less than two weeks until the 2021 NBA Draft on July 29th, the Sacramento Kings are well into the process of evaluating their options and the number-nine spot in the draft–while also looking beyond ninth, apparently.
Sacramento has brought in Gonzaga forward Corey Kispert and Stanford forward Ziaire Williams for workouts while also having met with Baylor guard Jared Butler, per multiple reports.
Kispert, who is projected to be in the 10-17 range in most mock drafts, posted on his Instagram account on Wednesday that he was indeed in Sacramento on a visit. The 6’7 senior averaged 18.6 points, 5.0 rebounds and 1.8 assists per game for Gonzaga on 52-percent shooting from the field and 44-percent shooting from downtown last season.
Shortly after word of Kispert’s visit circulated around the Kings Twitterverse, reports surfaced of the team having dinner with Baylor guard and 2021 Final Four Most Outstanding Player award winner Jared Butler.
According to Jason Anderson of The Sacramento Bee, Butler dined with the front office staff in and then visited the team facility on Tuesday afternoon. The 20-year-old is currently not able to participate in workouts due to a heart condition, with the young guard awaiting medical clearance to resume participation in basketball activities.
Most mock drafts have Butler in the late-first round, early second round range.
Over 30 appearances, the 6’3 junior averaged 16.7 points, 4.8 assists and 2.0 steals per game while shooting 47-percent from the field and 41-percent from three-point range for the national champion Bears.
Lastly, it was confirmed on Thursday that Sacramento brought in one of the most intriguing prospects of the draft this week–Stanford forward Ziaire Williams.
Williams, who is seen as a mid-late first round pick, worked out for the Kings in Sacramento on Wednesday per Jason Anderson of The Sacramento Bee.
Over 20 appearances for the Cardinal, the 6’9 forward posted averages of 10.7 points, 4.6 rebounds and 2.2 assists per game on 37-percent shooting from the field and 22-percent from beyond the arc. While Williams had some struggles in his only college season, the young forward has plenty of upside in his game.
Williams’ 6’9 frame and 6’10 wingspan give him the tools to be an above-average NBA defender, a player that Sacramento could hope to grow into a key contributor in the coming years.
While Williams, Kispert and Butler are all intriguing prospects, the more intriguing aspect of these workouts is the fact that none of these players are considered to be drafted in the top-10 of the draft.
It’s possible that Sacramento is eyeing a move down in the draft, with Oklahoma City’s 16th and 18th picks being the most frequently discussed picks that could be on the move. The Kings could be active in trade discussions come draft week, with everything assumingely on the table for the franchise outside of star guard De’Aaron Fox and rookie standout Tyrese Haliburton.
Sacramento also owns the 39th pick in the draft.
Other teams with picks that could be on the move come draft night:
- New York: 19th & 21st
- Houston: 23rd & 24th
- Los Angeles Lakers: 22nd
Be sure to get all of your NBA Draft coverage right here on Sports 1140 KHTK leading up to the 2021 NBA Draft on July 29th.