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2022 NBA Draft: Jaden Ivey prefers not to play for Sacramento Kings

Top prospect Jaden Ivey reportedly doesn’t want to be picked by the Sacramento Kings in this week’s NBA Draft.

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As the days until the NBA Draft fall by the wayside, the amount of rumors grows exponentially. On June 15, ESPN’s Jonathan Givony released a mock draft that included information about how top prospect Jaden Ivey feels about the idea of being drafted by the Sacramento Kings.

In short, though, he doesn’t want to go to Sacramento, despite Givony mocking him there:

The Kings aren’t Ivey’s preferred destination but have proved willing to take players without the benefit of workouts and medical information in the past, doing so as recently as a year ago when selecting Davion Mitchell. Many around the NBA feel that this pick is available for a team looking to swap picks and move up the draft for Ivey. Detroit, Indiana and Oklahoma City are among those that could potentially exchange an asset to help the Kings’ chances of contending for a playoff spot, with the likes of Jerami Grant, Myles Turner and Lu Dort a few potential options that rival teams point to. In the event that the Kings elect to hold on to this pick and prefer to avoid the drama associated with picking a player against his camp’s will, the candidacy of Keegan Murray might be gaining steam with head coach-to-be Mike Brown. Owner Vivek Ranadive is also said to be a proponent of selecting him.

Aside from being one of the first picks, draft prospects want to go to an exciting city where they will have the chance to compete. Over the last 15-plus years, Sacramento is neither of those things.

It’s hard for an outsider to view the city of Sacramento as exciting or fun when it sits in the shadow of both San Francisco and Los Angeles. Unlike most NBA franchises, the Kings are not in the biggest city in their state. However, this likely doesn’t have much to do with the notion that Ivey doesn’t want to be drafted by the Kings, a franchise whose fans have nicknamed it “basketball hell.” The Kings are possibly the least successful franchise in American professional sports. Three new Presidents have been elected since the last time the Kings reached the postseason.

Not only has the team been unsuccessful on the court, but the front office has not been the best either. They have made a multitude of bad decisions and mistreated players. Unfortunately, the Kings just aren’t an attractive team. Especially when a young, hopeful team like the Detroit Pistons, who have won multiple championships in their storied history, pick right after them.

But if there is anything about the Kings that would draw the attention of a young talented player, it's the opportunity to make history. If a player leads the Kings out of their misfortune, their name will certainly go down in history.