Sacramento Kings 2019 NBA Draft Preview
The Kings currently own picks 40, 47 and 60 in Thursday’s draft
Since the 2007-08 season, the Sacramento Kings have been a staple in the NBA Draft Lottery.
After eleven straight years of selecting in the top-ten, the Kings have found themselves in unfamiliar territory as they hold three second-round picks in this years’ draft. Owners of picks 40,47 and 60 this year, Sacramento has held a flurry of pre-draft workouts as they weigh their options. While reports from some news outlets speculate that the Kings could package their picks to move up in the draft, others believe that they could stand pat and stockpile their Summer League and G-League rosters with young talent.
Kings general manager Vlade Divac traded this years’ first-round pick back in the summer of 2015 when he traded Nik Stauskas, Jason Thompson and Carl Landry to the Philadelphia 76ers in a salary dump move. In return for taking on all of the Kings unwanted salary, the 76ers received a 2019 first-round pick that they later sent to Boston in 2018.
With Boston in possession of the Kings 14th pick, Divac and the rest of the Sacramento front office will focus on using their trio of second-round picks to move up in the draft, or make selections that will benefit their franchise depth. Divac is eyeing all possibilities he looks to capitalize on a surprising 2018-19 campaign.
The pick that has the most value for Sacramento is their highest, obviously. Pick number 40 brings the possibility of drafting Tacko Fall, the 7-foot-six-inch center out of UCF that polarized the college basketball world for this year’s NCAA Tournament. Fall was recently brought in for a workout in Sacramento, and could hear his name called on June 20th when the Kings are on the clock for pick number 40. The big-man from Senegal has incredible length (8’4 wingspan) and blocked 2.6 shots per game to go along with 11.6 points and 7.6 rebounds per game.
Another possibility in the 40th pick range is Missouri Tigers forward Jontay Porter. Sacramento’s biggest need is a forward-center with Kosta Koufos and Willie Cauley-Stein entering free agency, and Porter fits the bill. The 6’11 forward averaged 9.9 points and 6.8 rebounds per game while blocking 1.7 shots per game in the 2017-18 season. Porter’s stock has fallen due to tearing his MCL and ACL and missing the entire 2018-19 season, but as we have seen with Harry Giles, these injuries are not always a dooming factor in determining a young players career trajectory.
Previous players drafted with 40th pick: George Gervin (1974), Monta Ellis (2005), Lance Stephenson (2010), Will Barton (2012)
47th and 60th pick
As the draft moves on, the promising prospects start to dwindle.
With picks 47 and 60, Sacramento will look to add talent to their Summer League roster and G-League team for next season, baring a surprise pick that bullies his way onto the Kings 15-man roster for the 2019-20 season.
Some possibilities at pick number 47 include:
- Quinndary Weatherspoon, SG – Mississippi State (18.5 PPG, 4.7 RPG, 39.6 3PT%)
- Zylan Cheatham, PF – Arizona State (12.1 PPG, 10.3 RPG, 3.2 APG)
- Ignas Brazdeikis, SF – Michigan (14.8 PPG, 5.4 RPG, 39.2 3PT%)
Bolstering organizational depth is crucial for teams in today’s NBA, and these late second-round picks are important for that reason. Sacramento’s G-League affiliate Stockton just enjoyed a playoff run in their inaugural season.
Previous players drafted with the 47th pick: Vernon Maxwell (1988), Mo Williams (2003), Paul Millsap (2006)
Some possibilities at pick number 60 include:
- Terrance Mann, SF – Florida State (11.4 PPG, 6.5 RPG, 2.5 APG)
- Dedric Lawson, SF – Kansas (19.4 PPG. 10.3 RPG, 39.3 3PT%)
- Admiral Schofield, SG/SF – Tennessee (16.5 PPG, 6.1 RPG, 2.0 APG)
The last pick of the draft, otherwise known as “Mr. Irrelevant” actually has a few intriguing possibilities. Lawson enjoyed a big year for the Jayhawks as he earned a first-team all Big 12 selection. Schofield took the NCAA Tournament by storm as he led his Volunteers to the Sweet 16 this year. The senior averaged 19.6 points per game in the tournament as he improved his draft stock. Is it enough to be this year’s “Mr. Irrelevant”?
Previous players drafted with the 60th pick: Michael Cooper (1978), Drazen Petrovic (1986), Isaiah Thomas (2011)
With three draft picks and other assets at his disposal, Vlade Divac could look to make a splash on draft night. Historically, NBA Draft night always includes a barrage of pick-swaps and deals. In some cases, big deals can take shape like in 2007 when the Celtics acquired Ray Allen, propelling them to the 2008 championship. Sacramento made a draft night trade in 2016 that brought them the rights to a player from Serbia by the name of Bogdan Bogdanovic.
What will the 2019 NBA Draft have in store for the Sacramento Kings?
Will Vlade opt to keep his picks, or will he flip them to move into the first round? Is it possible that Divac trades picks and players from the current squad for an impact piece?
All questions will be answered on Thursday, June 20th at the 2019 NBA Draft.