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3 players the Kings should be monitoring for the 2022 NBA Draft

It’s never too early to be thinking about the draft in Sacramento.

NBA: NBA-Draft Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports

For a smaller market team such as the Sacramento Kings, the draft is very crucial to success. It is the place to find the big name players with high ceilings, as well as the hidden gems that can change the fortune of a team forever.

Although there is decently high chance the Kings may include this year's first round pick in a trade package, here are some quick notes on a few players from the Wooden Award watch list they should keep their eyes on if they still have picks to use after this week’s trade deadline.

Oscar Tshiebwe | PF/C, Kentucky

At 6’9” 255lbs, the Congolese junior is one of the elite players in the nation. It is without a doubt that he is the best traditional big man in the country and is a true force to be reckoned with. Forget all other statistics. Tshiebwe is averaging a historic 15.2 rebounds per game in junior year. More than Shaq and Tim Duncan averaged. He is exactly what the Kings need in a big man. He is relentless, physical, and strong. Also averaging 15.8 points per game on almost 60% from the field, many consider Tshiebwe to be the best player in the country. If he is available, he should be drafted without hesitation.

Keegan Murray | SF/PF, Iowa

The 6’8” 225 lbs sophomore is extremely versatile. Averaging 22.3 points and 8.3 assists, Murray would complement the Kings very well. He adds much needed rebounding to the wing position with very high scoring ability. He shoots 55% from the field and 34% from behind the arc.

Murray is also very skilled on defense. This season he is averaging 2.1 blocks and 1.4 steals per game. The Kings have been one of the worst defensive teams in the NBA for too many year, but have recently drafted players with defensive ability. Murray would be no different. With his athleticism and size, Murray would help the team improve in many different areas.

Jabari Smith | PF, Auburn

At 6’10 220 lbs, the freshman forward is currently leading the No. 1 ranked Auburn Tigers to a near perfect season. The big man is averaging 15.3 points, 6.7 rebounds, and just over one block and one steal per game. However, one reason he stands out is his three point and free throw percentages. Unlike the average big man, Smith shoots 40.4% from the arc averaging five attempts per game and 80.2% from the line with 4 attempts per game.

Smith, is also an extremely tenacious defender. He can guard very well whether he is in the paint or out on the perimeter. With his youth, size, and skill set, Smith could very well turn out to be one of the best players in this class once he matures both physically and mentally.

Trayce Jackson-Davis | PF , Indiana

In his third season, Jackson-Davis is averaging 17.8 points, 8.4 rebounds, and 2.6 blocks per game. Along with being a Wooden Award finalist, he is also a Naismith Defensive Player of the Year finalist. Jackson-Davis is an all around threat in the paint. Regardless of who the Kings center is next season, he would be a great compliment in the front court.

Although the 6’9” 245 lbs forward often plays Center for the Hoosiers, he would be a better fit in the NBA as a power forward. If he were to go against any above average center in the league right now, even the smaller ones, he would have a very hard time. With Jackson-Davis at the four, the King's presence near the rim would be a great threat to opposing offenses.