Grading the surprising Sacramento Kings draft night decisions

Davion Mitchell, Sacramento Kings. Mandatory Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports
Davion Mitchell, Sacramento Kings. Mandatory Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports /
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The 2023 NBA Draft is officially wrapped up, as we got a glimpse of the future of the league. Some of our initial reactions: The Houston Rockets won the draft with Amen Thompson at the 4th pick and Cam Whitmore somehow falling to them at pick 20. The young trio of Amen, Jalen Green, and Whitmore will be electric and fun to watch. The Orlando Magic had a questionable draft, selecting Anthony Black with the 6th pick and reaching on the 11th pick with Jett Howard.

While some teams drafted the future of their franchise Thursday night, most front offices were drafting role players to improve their teams. The Sacramento Kings held the 24th pick in the draft, expected to select a role player to improve their already solid roster.

Decision 1: Trading away the 24th pick and Richaun Holmes

After a month of analysis on who the Kings would select with the 24th pick, they traded it away. The surprising trade sent Richaun Holmes and the 24th pick to the Dallas Mavericks, as the Sacramento Kings got no player or draft pick in return but freed up cap space.

While the Sacramento Kings will miss having a big man full of energy like Richaun Holmes, the franchise did not value him enough last season, as we saw a significant minute decrease. He joined the Kings in 2019 and had a career-best year in 2020-21. That year, he averaged 14.2 points, 8.3 rebounds, 1.6 blocks, and 29.2 minutes per game. Last season, he was playing just 8.3 minutes per game.

After falling out of the rotation, especially when it came to the playoffs, Kings fans expected Holmes to be traded at some point this offseason.

Trading away the 24th pick was not a big deal, as none of their desired prospects were available. If the Kings felt nobody on the board was worth keeping the pick for, then we trust Monte McNair with this trade.

The Sacramento Kings saved a lot of money with this trade and now have over $30 million in cap space (around $38 million). This is a great cushion, as the Kings might be getting ready to make a move in free agency. We love the move as a money-saver, as the Kings should be looking for an immediate impact player in free agency rather than a late first-round rookie.

Decision Grade: A-