June 28, 2012; Newark, NJ, USA; A general view of the first round draft board at the conclusion of the first round of the 2012 NBA Draft at the Prudential Center. Mandatory Credit: Jerry Lai-USA TODAY Sports

Sacramento Kings: A Royal Prediction

The Sacramento Kings will have the 8th overall pick in Thursday nights NBA Draft. The Kings are rumored to be shopping that pick and may not actually make a selection come Thursday night. That said, assuming the Kings retain their pick, they have some interesting options to chose from. The Joel Embiid injury may throw a wrench into Thursday’s draft as well. All of us at www.aroyalpain.com decided to take predict where the Kings will go assuming they do make the pick.


Bryan: Aaron Gordon, PF, Arizona

Personally, I hope the Kings find reason to trade the pick and acquire their desired veteran though such a move likely won’t be made until draft day, especially with the Joel Embiid news and teams waiting to see how far he drops. The fact that Embiid will likely fall though has messed up the draft and had I been forced to say the Kings keep the pick, I would have thought Marcus Smart would have been their guy prior to Embiid’s injury. That will likely move Smart out of the Kings’ range though so I think they attempt to fill out their weakest position (assuming Gay re-signs) and go with power forward Aaron Gordon. He’s going to take a few years to develop but he’s an incredibly smart player with rare intangibles at a position that usually lacks them. To have such at a young age is pretty impressive and while he may not be the most NBA ready come the 8th pick, he’s likely the best player available.


Scott: Aaron Gordon, PF, Arizona

I think the draft hinges on Boston’s pick at No. 6. The Celtics could pick Gordon, in which case I see the Kings making a surprise choice at No. 8. But if Boston goes elsewhere, I see the athletic Arizona forward falling to the Kings, and if he’s there, they won’t pass up the chance to add a defensive standout with offensive potential.


Bryant: Marcus Smart, PG, Oklahoma State

I am about 75% sure the Kings will have traded the pick by Thursday’s end, either for a veteran player (Taj Gibson or Arron Afflalo seem the most logical) or trading back for multiple selections. If the Kings stay at No. 8, however, I think the most likely player available will be Smart. While it’s pretty much pointless to predict, I believe Joel Embiid will be taken by Orlando at No. 4, Noah Vonleh by Utah at No. 5, Aaron Gordon by Boston at No. 6, and Julius Randle at No. 7. If Smart is the selection, he fits well with the current roster regardless of the Kings decisions on Isaiah Thomas – he could start next to Thomas or make a very promising back court with Ben McLemore.


Jared: Marcus Smart, PG, Oklahoma State

If the Sacramento Kings keep this pick, which I still see as unlikely, I believe Pete D’Alessandro goes with the best overall player available. That player is Marcus Smart. Marcus Smart’s defensive prowess, NBA-ready build, and leadership mesh well in Sacramento.


Tony: Elfrid Payton, PG, Louisiana Lafayette

The Sacramento Kings will have a new starting point guard by Thursday night. It could be via trade (Rajon Rondo, Jrue Holiday, Ty Lawson, Jeff Teague, Brandon Knight, etc.) or via draft pick (Marcus Smart or Elfrid Payton). It’s a toss up, but assuming the Kings actually use their pick, I think Elfrid Payton is the guy.


Kyle: Marcus Smart, PG, Oklahoma State

The Sacramento Kings are motivated to win now. They will trade the pick for veteran help. Assuming they make the pick, it should be Elfrid Payton. He can be a leader, adds size to the Kings backcourt and can defend. He also has the ability to play next to Isaiah Thomas, assuming he stays, both facilitating on offense and guarding shooting guards on the other end. I think the Kings will take Marcus Smart. Smart features the size the Kings are looking for and has the ability to be a dynamic point guard.


Thursday night should provide Sacramento Kings fans with intrigue one way or another. We will all be talking about the trade that happened or what the rookie could do for the Kings future. Let us know what you think the Kings will do.

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