Kings Draw Second Pick in NBA Draft Lottery

SACRAMENTO, CA (MPG)  |  Rich Peters, MPG Editor
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SACRAMENTO, CA (MPG) - In what will be arguably the most important draft in Sacramento Kings history, the odds have already bounced in their favor. They made the biggest jump in Tuesday night’s lottery, moving all the way from the projected seventh overall pick to the second slot behind the tank-happy Phoenix Suns. It is the first time in the modern lottery era that the kings have held a top three pick.

But with a long, dismal history of draft selections recently highlighted by Jimmer Fredette, Thomas Robinson, Ben McLemore and Nik Stauskas, does it even matter at all? For what it’s worth, this is a deep draft class headlined by Deandre Ayton out of Arizona, Luka Doncic out of Real Madrid, Jaren Jackson out of Michigan State, Marvin Bagley III out of Duke and Trae Young out of Oklahoma, to name a few. The talent is definitely there.

The Suns appeared to have their sights set on Ayton all season long as they gloriously tanked. He looks ready to make an immediate impact in the league and keeping him in the state of Arizona makes sense. However, Suns new head coach, Igor Kokoskov, was Doncic's head coach when he won the 2017 EuroBasket title and is big on his guy. This may change things in the Kings’ favor yet again heading into the draft.

The Kings have a lot of options, but if Ayton fell to the number two pick Sacramento would have no choice but to take him. The 7’0”, 260 pound, 19-year-old averaged 20.1 points, 11.6 rebounds and 1.9 blocks in his freshman year. “Elite physical tools, soft touch at the rim and a promising jump shot make Ayton the likely top pick,” according to SI’s latest Top 100 Prospect Rankings. “His sheer size and strength presents a matchup problem for most any defender, and he may be the most athletic 7-foot prospect to come along this decade.”

Ayton would be a no brainer for Sacramento, as it is extremely rare to find a 7-footer with his arsenal. But it surely won’t be that easy, it never is for a Kings organization that hasn’t reached the playoffs or finished with a winning record since 2005-2006.