8. Xavier Tillman Sr.
The Grizzlies gave up a future second-round pick on draft night in 2020 to move up five spots and select Xavier Tillman Sr. at 35th overall. The 6’8 big man played three years at Michigan State and was viewed as a without a traditional position in the NBA. The draft night trade technically made him a Kings pick, but Sacramento got Robert Woodard and a future second.
Woodard played just 25 NBA games before taking his talents overseas. No NBA opportunity is on the horizon for the 6’6 wing, but he could have a lengthy career in Europe if he chooses.
Tillman Sr. quickly cracked the Grizzlies rotation and has become a glue player for Memphis. Last season, he averaged 7.0 points, 5.0 rebounds, and 1.0 steal in 19.3 minutes per game as primarily the team’s backup center. He has rated as a well-above-average player by win shares per 48 minutes in each of his first three seasons and his 1.2 VORP was the sixth-highest on the Grizzlies last year.
The Sacramento Kings wish they would have kept the 35th overall selection and taken Xavier Tillman Sr. in 2020. He would solve their backup center woes and serve as a quality rotation piece moving forward. Credit to the Kings for stockpiling assets, but this was a failed deal.