The Sacramento Kings moving up to 4th in the 2022 NBA Draft lottery was an incredible fluke, but given the presumptive top three of Jabari Smith Jr, Paolo Banchero and Chet Holmgren, the Kings will have a tough decision. to take.
In an effort to see what their options will be, let’s take a look at the favorites to be drafted at No. 4 with odds courtesy of DraftKings, but to be clear, these are the odds for the No. 4 pick, regardless. if Sacramento is the one making the selection.
Most draft betting tipsters seem to have Ivey as the clear 4th guy in the draft, with some even ranking him No. 1.
It’s hard to see someone with the level of speed and athletic ability like Ivey fail in the NBA. His brilliance on the open court is special to watch, and there are only a handful of NBA players as fast as Ivey.
For Sacramento, Ivey’s fit is questionable. Drafting Ivey would be the third year in a row that they have drafted a guard. Could they do it again?
It’s hard to argue that past the top 3, Ivey has the best combination of upside and certainty, which might be too much for Sacramento. And for the Kings, it’s hard to argue for a draft based on need over form when you just went 30-52 last season.
Sharpe is undoubtedly the mystery man of the pack, with some touting his superstar potential while others criticized him in the pre-draft process. A few weeks ago, it looked like Sharpe was at least considered the 5th guy after Ivey, the biggest NBA Mock Draft community seemed to set Sharpe back a few points due to his overall mystery.
His rising star is palpable, as I pointed out last month, but even I, a Sharpe supporter, have to admit that would be a risky pick. If Sharpe is indeed the pick, you’d hope GM Monte McNair did his due diligence on Sharpe and his game.
Murray is probably the guy who would be the best player in the first year, given his advanced age at 22 and his potential next to Domantas Sabonis in the frontcourt. The question with Murray is whether he has enough long-term upside to warrant a selection at No.4.
For the Kings, getting a star is next to impossible, so signing someone who would max out as a solid starter at No. 4 could be seen as a questionable move. Maybe putting that kind of cap on Murray is premature, but looking at his tape, he looks like someone who would help a lot, but not seriously change the trajectory of the franchise.
There are other types of storylines, but at No. 4, Ivey, Sharpe and Murray seem to be the names Sacramento will choose from.
If they don’t draft one of those three guys, a trade up or down seems like a possibility.
For a falling trade, it’s hard to find the exact trading partner, but in this scenario, Sacramento could try to drop a few spots, while snagging someone like Murray and picking up another asset that could be factored into team plans. For a trade, it’s unclear whether Sacramento is keen to cede the future capital project to enter that top three.
McNair never seemed to do what was expected since taking over the team two seasons ago. No one expected them to draft No. 9 Davion Mitchell last season, and no one expected Tyrese Haliburton to be the one to leave at last year’s trade deadline.
So get ready for McNair to throw another curveball in the draft. And whatever happens, it’s going to be two long weeks filled with speculation and rumors.
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