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Don't Sleep on Free Agency

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Most of us having been discussing ways to solidify the team through the draft the past couple weeks.

But looking at the recent history of the Kings, the draft hasn't provided a whole lot of instant gratification.

Here's a look at the Kings' Petrie-era first round draft choices and their rookie contributions for Sacramento:


Player      Yr  G GS  MPG Min% Pt/G Rb/G As/G TO/G  Usg  PER
Garcia      06 67 11 19.4  33%  5.6  2.8  1.4  1.1 14.4 10.3
Martin      05 45  0 10.1  11%  2.9  1.3  0.5  0.5 14.8  8.7
Wallace     02 54  1  8.0  11%  3.2  1.6  0.5  0.4 20.0 13.3
Turkoglu    01 74  7 16.8  31%  5.3  2.8  0.9  0.7 14.4 11.7
Williams    99 50 50 36.1  74% 12.8  3.1  6.0  2.9 18.6 12.8
Abdul-Wahad 98 59 16 16.3  24%  6.4  2.0  0.9  1.1 20.2 10.1
Stojakovic  97      DID NOT PLAY UNTIL 1999

(Note: Mateen Cleaves was drafted by Detroit and traded to Sacramento, so it's not clear he's the player Petrie would have chosen there, so he's not included. Also, Dan Dickau was drafted by the Kings, but never played a game in Sacramento, so it's not clear Petrie ever intended Dickau to play for Sacramento. So he's not included, either.)

Only Jason Williams was an immediate starter. Tariq Abdul-Wahad started some games and played quite a bit his rookie campaign (with limited success), and Francisco Garcia got some spot starts along with a handful of DNP:CDs.

It's interesting to note that (outside of the overseas Stojakovic) Gerald Wallace and Kevin Martin contributed the least as rookies, but ended up being some the best players of the Kings' last decade of drafting.

So, with this track record of high-potential, low-readiness players, can we expect Petrie to find a serious rotation player at #19? Part of it could be Rick Adelman's notorious ignoring of rookies, part of it could be several seasons of success with an already deep and nearly unpermeable rotation. But how much is Petrie's style?

One thing we all know is that Petrie uses the trade and free-agency better than maybe any other GM in the league to stock his roster. Yet, we're fixated on the draft.

ESPN has a rather interesting list of free agents by team and contractual restrictions. It shows the Kings' own free agents (Bonzi Wells, Jamal Sampson) along with the ones they can pursue starting July 1. (Contracts can't be signed until July 12, though.)

So, any reasonable free agents out there? Which ones would you take a look at?