Kings begin search for 2019 NBA Draft steal, work out six prospects


Kings begin search for 2019 NBA Draft steal, work out six prospects

The search for a diamond in the rough has begun in Sacramento. With head coach Luke Walton looking on, the Kings held their first predraft workout Monday.

It won’t be an easy search for Kings general manager Vlade Divac. Sacramento doesn’t have a first round pick in this year’s draft, although the Kings own three second-round selections: Nos. 40, 47 and 60 overall.

NBC Sports California confirmed that Stockton Kings head coach Ty Ellis and player development coach Bobby Jackson helped run the six-man workout. On Monday, ABC 10's Sean Cunningham reported that no new staff members conducted the workout.

Houston guard Armoni Brooks was a late addition to the group Monday, as he most likely tests the draft waters prior returning to college for his senior season. At 6-foot-3, 196 pounds, Brooks improved in each of his first three seasons at the NCAA level. He posted 13.4 points and 6.3 rebounds per game and made 39 percent of his 3-point shots this season.

“Everytime you come to one of these workouts, we’re all really good players,” Brooks told reporters at the Kings facility (via ABC 10). “You’ve just got to find a way to impact the game in little ways - defense, rebounding, just doing the little things to separate yourself.”

Icelandic guard Jon Axel Gudmundsson is an intriguing prospect. Standing 6-foot-5, 190 pounds, he stuffed the stat sheet in his junior season at Davidson and posted 16.9 points, 7.3 rebounds and 4.8 assists per game. He had a down shooting year from distance, hitting just 35.3 percent from 3-point range. But he shot 40.6 percent a year prior, so there is room for growth.

Despite growing up overseas, Gudmundsson has watched plenty of NBA games and even knows a little about the Kings.

“This year I feel like it was kind of their rising year,” Gudmundsson told reporters Monday. “I feel like they’re coming up, and I feel like next year is going to be a playoff team and they’ve got a bright future ahead of them.”

Kansas State small forward Xavier Sneed matched up with BYU's Yoeli Childs in the workout. Sneed posted modest numbers as a junior and is undersized for a three. Childs, meanwhile, averaged 21.2 points and 9.7 rebounds in his third college season.

“It’s awesome,” Childs told reporters Monday in Sacramento about the pre-draft process. “It’s so much fun. You’re so close to living the dream that you’ve had your whole life. I really try to not take a single moment for granted. I’m really feel just blessed to be here.”

Reggie Perry from Mississippi State and Kevin Samuels out of TCU provided the post play. Perry is the youngest of the lot at just 19 years old. He averaged 9.7 points and 7.2 rebounds per game in his lone NCAA season.

Samuels, 21, was the big body. Measuring in at 6-foot-11, 250 pounds, the Horned Frogs center posted a modest 7.4 points and 6.9 rebounds in 24.9 minutes per game this season.

[RELATED: Ex-King Labissiere learning from bench in Blazers' run]

Perry is the only player from the current group who was invited to the NBA Combine in Chicago. None of the six prospects are currently listed on most two-round mock drafts, but plenty can change in the next few weeks.

This is only the beginning for Sacramento. The Kings likely will hold multiple workouts like this over the next month while they build up to the NBA draft June 20 at Brooklyn's Barclays Center. 

Report: Kings one of many teams lining up for 76ers free agent Tobias Harris


Report: Kings one of many teams lining up for 76ers free agent Tobias Harris

The rumor mill is churning and it’s unlikely to stop until the first week of NBA free agency has passed by. Armed with massive amounts of cap space, the Kings are likely to get mentioned in all kinds of potential deals.

According to Shams Charania, the Kings are one of the many NBA teams interested in forward Tobias Harris.

In addition to the 76ers and Clippers, “Brooklyn, Dallas, Denver, Memphis, Minnesota, New Orleans, and Sacramento are expected to also express interest,” Charania wrote on Wednesday.

Harris’ name has been floated as a potential fit for a while with the Kings, although he’ll come at a steep price and would create an issue on the frontline.

More of a stretch four than a small forward, new head coach Luke Walton would have his hands full trying to fit the pieces together, especially if Harrison Barnes returns to the team.

The Kings could fit both Harris and Barnes under the cap and shift prized big man, Marvin Bagley, to the center position. With the team’s pace of play, it might work, at least for short bursts during games.

It likely would take a max offer to obtain Harris, which is around four-years at $141 million.

The smooth shooting forward turns 27 on July 15th. He averaged 20 points, 7.9 rebounds, 2.8 assists and shot 39.9 percent from long range during stops with the Clippers and 76ers.

This isn’t the first time Harris has been linked to the Kings. Keith Pompey of the Philadelphia Inquirer listed the Kings as a potential landing spot for the rangy forward back in May.

[RELATED: Why Kings should call Rockets if Capela is available]

In addition to Harris, Charania added that the Kings are a potential landing spot for reserve point guard Cory Joseph.

Joseph, 27, spent the last two seasons coming off the bench for the Indiana Pacers. The eight-year vet averaged 6.5 points, 3.9 assists and 3.4 rebounds in 25.2 minutes per game last season.

If Sacramento doesn’t pick up a $3.2 million team option on Yogi Ferrell, they might be in the market for a player to eat minutes behind starter De’Aaron Fox.

Why Kings should call Rockets if Clint Capela is available via trade


Why Kings should call Rockets if Clint Capela is available via trade

Having more than $60 million in available salary cap space is both a blessing and a curse for the Sacramento Kings.

On the one hand, they need to spend at least $50 million to get to the NBA’s salary floor. On the other hand, they don’t want to spend, just to spend.

While the team hopes to be a player in free agency, there is a full menu of ways to improve the team. One of those options is to package a future asset and some of their coveted cap space, and trade for an established NBA player on a long-term deal.

Steven Adams was the first major center to potentially come available, but it looks like he won’t be the last. The Rockets are trying to make a play for Jimmy Butler and they are willing to deal away a couple of their key players. 

ESPN's Adrian Wojnarowski reported Wednesday one of those players is center Clint Capela.

Capela checks all of the boxes for the Kings. At 25 years old, he fits the team’s player arc and he is the rim-running, shot-blocking rebounder they desperately need.

He’s also locked up on a four-year, $72 million contract that is completely affordable for a player that averaged 16.6 points, 12.7 rebounds and 1.5 blocks per game last season in Houston.

It would likely cost the Kings a top-10 protected first-round draft pick, but the team is young enough to withstand another year without a pick. Sacramento also has seven second-round selections over the next two years to sweeten a deal.

If the Kings were feeling generous, they could make a mega-deal out of the situation. They have the available cap space to absorb Capela ($16.4 million), Eric Gordon ($14 million) and P.J. Tucker ($8.3 million), freeing up just under $40 million for the Rockets.

In a scenario like this, the Kings would still have more than $20 million a year to pay Harrison Barnes. They could also clear $22 million off the books next season when Gordon and Tucker expire and Buddy Hield and Bogdan Bogdanovic come up for extensions.

Whether or not the Kings have held discussions with the Rockets is unknown at this time, but Sacramento needs to be aggressive in all facets of the summer schedule. They know Willie Cauley-Stein wants out and there are options to replace him on the market.

But very few offer the contract, numbers and age fit that Capela does.

[RELATED: Kings' 10 options to fill small forward opening in free agency]

Kings general manager Vlade Divac selected three players in the second round, but the likelihood of any of them making an impact this season is minimal. If they are going to compete for a playoff spot in the Western Conference, they have to take risks in free agency and on the trade front.

A deal for Capela would add another impact player to add to the foundation of the team. It would come with future costs, but it’s hard to imagine finding a better fit than the 6-foot-10 center.