5 Players Kings might replace Harrison Barnes with by the trade deadline

Sacramento Kings, Harrison Barnes. Mandatory Credit: Sergio Estrada-USA TODAY Sports
Sacramento Kings, Harrison Barnes. Mandatory Credit: Sergio Estrada-USA TODAY Sports /
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The Sacramento Kings want to prove that last season was no fluke. Few had them making the playoffs coming into the year, but the Kings produced the top offensive rating in the league and finished third in the Western Conference. Sacramento wants to take the next step and make a deep playoff run. Accomplishing that may take some roster improvements.

The Kings had a quiet summer. They brought over EuroLeague MVP Sasha Vezenkov, and the 6’9 forward is a player to watch. Beyond that, Sacramento is banking on roster continuity and a second-year boost under head coach Mike Brown. Is that enough?

The Sacramento Kings may need to be active in upgrading their roster before the trade deadline. Fans know they are not afraid to take risks, and Harrison Barnes is the most tradeable talent on their roster. He cannot be moved until Dec. 29, but the Kings may field calls for a replacement as they look to make a deep playoff run.

5. De’Andre Hunter

Hunter was in trade rumors all summer and is dealing with a knee injury. The Hawks expect him to play on opening night, but injuries have been an issue throughout his career. Hunter averages just 51.5 games per season through his first four, but this could present an opportunity for the Kings.

Barnes and Hunter are roughly the same size and offer similar stats. The current King is a superior shooter and defender, but Hunter is six years younger. Sacramento may be able to convince the Hawks to add draft capital in the swap. Atlanta wants to win now, and adding a few more draft picks could put the Kings in a position to make a blockbuster trade for a third star.

This is a risky move as De’Andre Hunter is just starting a four-year $90 million extension. He must stay healthy and improve his defense to make this trade worthwhile. Those are massive ifs given his track record.

The Sacramento Kings may look to upgrade their defense and create more playing time at the four for Keegan Murray in a Harrison Barnes trade.