1. Chris Duarte
Chris Duarte had a promising first season with the Indiana Pacers in 2021-22, averaging 13.1 points on good shooting percentages, 4.1 rebounds, 2.1 assists, and 1 steal. He has never played more than 55 games in a season, however, and his role with the Pacers was diminished in his second season.
Playing fewer games and fewer minutes, his production dropped in every aspect of the game. Thus, he has not managed to establish himself in the NBA yet. Nevertheless, the Kings acquired him in exchange for two future second-round picks. A low-risk trade for Sacramento could very well mean a fresh start for Duarte but it will not be easy.
The Kings already have an established backcourt rotation and top of the roster. Between De’Aaron Fox, Kevin Huerter, Malik Monk, and Davion Mitchell, guard and wing minutes won’t be easy to come by. Duarte will have to prove his worth and make a name for himself, and it all starts in training camp.
In his rookie season, he showed promise as a three-point shooter, but last season, his shooting percentage from behind the arc dropped to only 31.6 percent. Now, he has the chance to redeem himself as a shooter and show that last season was just a down year.
Every team needs shooting, and the Kings are no exception. De’Aaron Fox and Domantas Sabonis are both great at operating in the paint and finding open teammates for kickout passes. Last season, Terence Davis, who is not with the Kings anymore, averaged 13.1 minutes per game as a shooting guard. If Duarte can bring energy, defense, and shooting off the bench, those minutes are most likely his. First, he will have to start off the season on a good note, however, and there is no better place to do so than training camp.