Thanks to a blockbuster trade made last season, the Sacramento Kings are officially back in the NBA Playoffs. After 16 seasons without a postseason appearance, the Kings are primed for not only a return but perhaps a sizable playoff push.
The trade that led to this was, of course, the controversial swap of Tyrese Haliburton to the Indiana Pacers for Domantas Sabonis. On Feb. 8, 2022, the deal was complete as Sacramento acquired Sabonis for a package including Haliburton, Buddy Hield, and Tristan Thompson.
Many scrutinized the move at the time, especially after Haliburton’s early success in Indiana, due to a combination of the clear potential he possesses mixed with a perceived ceiling that many felt limited Sabonis. Those detractors have since been proven wrong, however, as Domantas Sabonis has evolved into one of the top bigs in the NBA.
Not all of the Kings’ success can be attributed to Sabonis, as the growth of De’Aaron Fox, the hiring of Mike Brown, and several strong moves since by general manager Monte McNair. Still, the Sabonis trade serves as the marker for the changing of the tides in Sacramento. If all continues as it has so far, this deal will undoubtedly go down as one of the most important in the history of the Sacramento Kings.
The Sabonis trade sparked the Sacramento Kings, but where does it rank in franchise history?
While the Sacramento Kings’ trade history may not be the most decorated, there have been quite a few moves over the years that have provided all sorts of thrilling talents and many fan favorites.