Who will the Kings pick at no. 12?
- The Athletic: Killian Hayes (G), Ulm
- Sports Illustrated: Saddiq Bey (F), Villanova
- Bleacher Report: Killian Hayes (G), Ulm
- CBS Sports: Aaron Nesmith (F), Vanderbilt
- ESPN: Killian Hayes (G), Ulm
That’s a lot of momentum for Hayes, who The Ringer rates as the best overall prospect in this draft. Hayes is 19 and lauded for his playmaking. He fits the hole left by the departure of Bogdan Bogdanovic stylistically, but he also isn’t a great athlete, so it’s unclear if he can be a long-term option at shooting guard if De’Aaron Fox is still the point guard. It would seem to make more sense for the Kings to take a wing, but if the front office rates Hayes as the best talent on the board, there is a lot of evidence to support that opinion.
Who will the Kings pick at no. 35?
- The Athletic: Tre Jones (G), Duke
- Sports Illustrated: Jordan Nwora (F), Louisville
- Bleacher Report: Daniel Oturu (C), Minnesota
- CBS Sports: Zeke Nnaji (C), Arizona
- ESPN: Isaiah Joe (G), Arkansas
Not much has changed since we last looked at this pick Monday, but the inclusion of Isaiah Joe is really interesting, since he might be the very best shooter in the draft. He doesn’t do much but shoot, though if he hits, he could give the Kings some flexibility to move on from Buddy Hield without totally compromising their spacing. Daniel Oturu is another interesting name who has been compared to Alex Len due to his bulky frame and his ability to control the paint; like Len, Oturu has also dabbled with the 3-pointer, and he shot 37 percent from beyond the arc as a sophomore.
Who will the Kings pick at no. 43?
- The Athletic: Udoka Azubuike (C), Kansas
- Sports Illustrated: Paul Reed (F/C), DePaul
- Bleacher Report: Udoka Azubuike (C), Kansas
- CBS Sports: Payton Pritchard (G), Oregon
- ESPN: Xavier Tillman (C), Michigan State
Udoka Azubuike is a classic rim-protecting center who is a fantastic shot-blocker. He’s basically useless outside of the charge circle, but he’s great within that important real estate. Paul Reed also excelled defensively at DePaul, as he has a good hands a great steal rate, which is a strong statistical predictor for NBA success. The Blue Demons were 29 points per 100 possessions better with him on the floor versus on the bench. Payton Pritchard was a really productive player for four years at Oregon, and his shooting popped in his senior season — if that continues, then he’s a real NBA player. Finally Xavier Tillman is one of draftniks’ favorite players among bigs, and there’s an argument to take him even earlier than the middle of the second round. He’s versatile and defends well, and his 6’8 size isn’t a deal-breaker for a center.
Who will the Kings pick at no. 52?
- The Athletic: Cassius Stanley (G/F), Duke
- Sports Illustrated: Elijah Hughes (G/F), Syracuse
- Bleacher Report: Jalen Harris (G), Nevada
- CBS Sports: Ashton Hagans (G), Kentucky
- ESPN: Mason Jones (G), Arkansas
Another pick with absolutely no consensus, which is to be expected at this point in the draft. Cassius Stanley was a mixed bag at Duke — the athletic talent is absolutely there, but he had no consistent production. Ashton Hagans was a good defender but is a surprisingly bad offensive player for a point guard. On the other hand, Mason Jones, Elijah Hughes, and Jalen Harris are volume scorers and not much else. With a pick in 50s, it’s probably best to find a player who can do one thing well to stay on the floor and then develop the rest.
What would your ideal draft look like for the Kings? Any other players you think the team should be looking at?