Sacramento Kings: Buddy Hield draft night trade would be huge success

Sacramento Kings, Buddy Hield (Photo by Nic Antaya/Getty Images)
Sacramento Kings, Buddy Hield (Photo by Nic Antaya/Getty Images) /

As the 2021 NBA Draft looms just hours away, the Sacramento Kings are in a prime position to secure their frontcourt of the future and pick up an extra prospect while they’re at it. For now, the one name that should be at the forefront of Kings fans’ minds is Buddy Hield.

In a league where shooting is at a premium now more than ever, multiple teams have reportedly expressed interest in Hield. Considering Hield is owed $61.6 million over the next three years, the aggressive pursuit of the sharpshooter from contending teams like the Lakers and 76ers presents an interesting opportunity to offload future salary and add extra draft capital along the way.

While Hield’s statistical production dipped a bit this year, he still posted 16.7 points, 4.7 rebounds, and 3.6 assists per contest on 39.1 percent shooting from beyond the arc. It’s worth noting that Hield attempted a career-high 10.2 three-point attempts while still maintaining great efficiency.

In fact, only Steph Curry and Damian Lillard attempted more three-point shots per game this season. Lillard also hit 39.1 percent of his threes while taking 10.5 attempts per game; this shows just how Hield truly deserves to be mentioned when discussing the league’s elite shooters.

For these reasons, Hield would prove invaluable to a team looking to add a perimeter presence to a championship contender.

Trading away Buddy Hield for more draft picks on the night of the 2021 NBA Draft would be a huge success for the Sacramento Kings.

The potential most commonly rumored to take place at the moment is a swap with the Lakers that involves moving Hield for the 22nd pick, Montrezl Harrell, and one of Kyle Kuzma or Kentavious Caldwell-Pope.

In this scenario, the Kings would likely look to acquire Kuzma, who has the most long-term potential of the three and would help shore up the frontcourt rotation. At the moment, Marvin Bagley is the only big on the roster with a guaranteed contract, and he’s likely to be moved as well. This is why using their very limited cap space to pick up Kuzma and Harrell could be a great way to fix Sacramento’s frontcourt, especially considering the latter is looking to return to Sixth Man of the Year form.

Additionally, the Kings could take a swing for a high-upside player with the 22nd pick, without fear of wasting their only first-round selection. If free agents don’t wish to play in Sacramento, the Kings desperately need to improve via the draft. Someone like combo forward Jalen Johnson out of Duke could be a massive step in the right direction.

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It’s clear that the Kings need to prioritize building a contender around De’Aaron Fox, and right now this team is not that. If an opportunity presents itself to unload the next three years of big money owed to Buddy Hield during the draft, then it would be a mistake to let it pass.