The Sacramento Kings have been one of the leagues laughing stocks for the past few years. They have not made the playoffs since 2006 and from 2006-2018, the team has finished in the 11th-15th in the Western Conference. 2018-2019 we saw something special start to happen in the capital of California, as they finished with a 39-43 record, placing 9th in the conference. While for the most part, that may not sound like an accomplishment, it is for a team that has never been competitive for quite some time.

The Kings have young rising stars in De’Aaron Fox, Buddy Hield, and Marvin Bagley III that I think could make noise in the league. The team added some veteran players like Trevor Ariza and Dewayne Dedmon while re-signing guys like Harrison Barnes and Hield to show that they believe these are the guys that’ll make them competitive.

Here is a look at the Kings roster heading into the season.

Point Guards

Credit: Paul Kitagaki Jr./The Sacramento Bee
  • Yogi Ferrell
  • De’Aaron Fox
  • Cory Joseph

Fox, in my opinion, had one of the biggest improvements last season. Every statistical category went up from his rookie season and it is clear Fox has a bright future in this league. Not only can he score the ball, but he is also a great perimeter defender. I am looking forward to seeing what he can do in season three. Ferrell and the recently signed Joseph provide solid depth behind Fox that will get some quality playing time.

Shooting Guards

Credit: Kimani Okearah
  • Bogdan Bogdanović
  • Kyle Guy *Two-Way
  • Buddy Hield
  • Justin James

The big news here was Hield re-signing a huge 4-year, $94 million contract, which is much deserved in my opinion. His 20.7 scoring average last season was a career-high and I would not be surprised if he repeats his scoring outburst this season. Bogdanović averaged a career-high 14.1 points last season as he mainly came off the bench. The same can be said for this season as he is a solid scorer and three-point shooter.

James was the team’s second-round draft pick out of Wyoming that might get some playing time but could be playing in the G League from time to time to develop. Guy was another second-round pick but his two-way deal gives him a good opportunity to develop his game. A solid, young group of shooting guards with a bright future.

Small Forwards

Credit: Rocky Widner/NBAE via Getty Images
  • Trevor Ariza
  • Harrison Barnes

While the team is young, the small forwards have two veterans here. Barnes joined the team midway through the 2018-19 season and his impressive stint earned him a 4-year, $85 million extension. A solid scorer that has championship experience, which is perfect for a team that is still searching for that first title since 1951. Ariza is in his 16th season that still can contribute at a high level that provides a huge veteran presence in this young roster.

Power Forwards

Credit: Rocky Widner/NBAE via Getty Images
  • Marvin Bagley III
  • Nemanja Bjelica
  • Wenyen Gabriel *Two-Way
  • Harry Giles III
  • Tyler Lydon
  • Caleb Swanigan

Bagley III was the team’s second overall selection in 2018 and while not starting a lot of games his rookie season (only four games), he still averaged 14.9 points and 7.6 rebounds a game. He looks to be the teams full time starting power forward this season as another young Kings player with a bright future. Giles III is a former #1 overall recruit that took his rookie season off to recover from an ACL injury. He did play last season but averaged 7.0 points and 3.8 rebounds in limited minutes. He looks to be a key contributor off the bench this season fully healthy, which should be exciting to see how he plays in this lineup.

Bjelica, Lydon, Swanigan, and Gabriel are all young forwards that will look to earn minutes during the season, with the latter getting the majority of his playing time for the G League affiliate Stockton Kings for the time being.

Centers

Credit: Jason Getz/USA Today Sports
  • Dewayne Dedmon
  • Richaun Holmes

Dedmon joining the Kings, in my opinion, was one of the more underrated moves in free agency. He bounced around the league before joining the Atlanta Hawks in 2017. During his two-year run, he developed into a quality starting center that posts double-doubles as well as being a solid defender. He won’t be asked to do a lot with the amount of talent the team has but he’ll be a solid starter during the season. Holmes is a former role player for the Philadelphia 76ers and Phoneix Suns and will look to continue being a role player here.

Coach

Credit: Ed Szczepanski/USA Today Sports

Luke Walton is a young head coach that is in a different situation than he was in when he had stints with the Los Angeles Lakers and Golden State Warriors. Walton is a young coach with a good basketball IQ. A young lineup to play with, this is a good situation for him.

Projected Lineup/Roster Cuts

  • PG: De’Aaron Fox
  • SG: Buddy Hield
  • SF: Harrison Barnes
  • PF: Marvin Bagley III
  • C: Dewayne Dedmon
  • Sixth Man: Bogdan Bogdanović
  • Key Role Players: Trevor Ariza, Harry Giles III, Corey Joseph, Nemanja Bjelica
  • Rest of the Bench: Yogi Ferrell, Richaun Holmes, Caleb Swanigan, Justin James, Tyler Lydon
  • Two-Way Players: Kyle Guy, Wenyen Gabriel
  • Roster Cuts: Isaiah Piñeiro, Tyler Ulis

A young starting five that I think will be one of the more underrated lineups if everyone can stay healthy. Bench players like Bogdanoić, Ariza, Giles III, and Joseph, for example, only complete this lineup.

I am really high on the Sacramento Kings this season. The team has a lot of good players that have bright futures in this league. They are in a tough conference but I believe this team has a chance to make the playoffs this season, mainly in the 6-8 seed. Even if they don’t make it this season, I can see them fighting for a spot until the very end. The future is bright in Sacramento, which is something you haven’t heard in years. Don’t sleep on the Sacramento Kings.

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s