The Sacramento Kings have their share of young players — DeMarcus Cousins, Isaiah Thomas, Ben McLemore, Derrick Williams, Ray McCallum.
What they don’t really want is another, they would prefer a veteran that can help them climb into the playoffs in the West next season.
So you can have their No. 8 pick if you send them a veteran, ideally one who can defend on the perimeter and has a reliable outside shot. That’s what Scott Howard-Cooper of NBA.com reports.
The Kings put the No. 8 pick in the draft on the trade block immediately after the lottery Tuesday night, league sources told NBA.com, clearly looking to add at least one impact veteran in an attempt to push into the playoff conversation next season rather than wait for another rookie prospect to develop.
While several teams choosing in the top 10 on June 26 will be fielding trade offers as part of a deep draft with several intriguing prospects, the Kings have signaled they will take a proactive approach in hoping to make a deal.
It comes down to this: How quality a veteran will teams surrender to snap up for the players likely to be around at No. 8 — Doug McDermott, Aaron Gordon, James Young, international guys like Dario Saric?
Teams may well be interested in a deal for financial reasons — if they believe they can unload a more expensive veteran rotation player for a rotation player on a rookie contract, it makes sense. Under the current CBA rookie contracts are incredibly valuable for that reason. Don’t take my word for it, check out the graphs at fivethirtyeight.com (that’s not what the article is supposed to be about, but it makes my point).
These kind of trades often get done draft night — the team with the veteran has their eye on one specific player and waits to make sure he falls to them before pulling the trigger. The Kings draft him and Player X goes up on stage, shakes Adam Silver’s hand while wearing a Sacramento Kings hat, then finds out five minutes later he needs a different hat.
Just something to watch on draft night. This seems very plausible.