As the pre-draft process carries on, it seems more and more possible that Emmanuel Mudiay might be available for the Kings with the 6th pick. Tony recently noted that the Sacramento Kings often serve as a backdrop for sliding draft prospects. The Kings selected Thomas Robinson when he slid, as they did with Ben McLemore. And this year the Kings are considered a likely backstop for Emmanuel Mudiay. This, in keeping with the trend, is assumed despite Mudiay deciding not to work out for the Kings. Players refusing to work out for Sacramento certainly isn't new, but at a certain point we should ask the question of whether the Kings should continue to support this practice.
Thomas Robinson didn't work out for the Sacramento Kings. And in the end, drafting him didn't work out for the Kings. Robinson's slide seemed fortuitous at the time, but Robinson has struggled to find a home or success in the NBA. The Kings drafted him without an up close look. And despite the jokes we may make about players working out against chairs, the four teams ahead of the Kings were able to see something that made them pass on Robinson.
Despite this experience, the Kings then selected McLemore. The similarities were obvious. A Kansas player slides in the draft and the Kings take him despite a lack of up-close inspection. After his rookie season, McLemore seemed on pace to follow Robinson's career trajectory. Luckily, he showed significant improvement in his sophomore season. There are high hopes for Ben, but time will tell.
This brings us to Mudiay. If he happens to fall, which remains to be seen, should the Kings serve as his safety net? Or does doing so send the wrong message to agents and the players they'll represent in coming seasons? Should the Kings only draft a player if they first had an opportunity to see him post up a chair?
Exactly. If he won't work out for us then he deserves to be passed over if he slips below his self imposed threshold https://t.co/yE6nlUfYYU— Dave Lack (@DaveLack) June 5, 2015
Is it worth risking passing over a talented player out of spite? There's risk in any draft pick, even when a player has worked out an visited. Sometimes an in-person work out can blind you to a player's faults. Or it can confirm those faults and keep you from a mistake. But passing on talent is a mistake Sacramento can't make, especially when there have been no concerns raised about Mudiay's character. It's also worth noting that Mudiay has only agreed to visit the Philadelphia 76ers, New York Knicks, and Orlando Magic, not to work out for them.
Should Mudiay fall to the Kings, I believe they should select him regardless of his willingness to work out in Sacramento. But what do you say? Vote in the poll and discuss in the comments.
Update: Mudiay will be working out for Philadelphia and New York, it seems. On a related note, don't do research on just 4 hours of sleep.
Emmanuel Mudiay's schedule: 6/6 - Lakers workout 6/8 - dinner w/ Knicks 6/9 - Knicks workout 6/15 - dinner w/ Sixers 6/16 - Sixers workout— Adam Zagoria (@AdamZagoria) June 5, 2015