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2020 NBA Draft Interviews – Day 4 and 5

Wrapping up the last of the pre-draft interviews.

Draft Day is here and with it a wave of rumored activity! Who will the Kings taken with their three draft picks? Will we see the return of Mr. Cash Considerations himself? Is Monte McNair wheeling and dealing tonight?

I can't answer any of those.

What I can answer, is which of these guys jumped on a Zoom call with the Kings!

Monday, Nov. 16

Isaiah Stewart (Washington)

As far as I was able to tell, Stewart was one of those guys that didn't get an interview or a work out with the Kings. The big man from Washington is mocked between 18-28 in most drafts and would be a decent option for a big center if the Kings were looking to fill the holes left in the wake of an Alex Len or Harry Giles leaving the team. The guy is built like a tank, is fairly mobile for his size and spoke a good deal about being excited to show his range in the NBA.

Zeke Nnaji (Arizona)

Zeke was another guy who has had contact with the Kings, but again, no workout. Nnaji says he's put on 20 lbs of muscle during the pandemic while maintaining 6% of body fat and credited going vegan as something that really helped in that process. If he finds himself available at #35, I think the Kings could really benefit from having a stretchy big like him.

Nico Mannion (Arizona)

Nico has not had contact with the Kings. In a follow up question, he said he felt he could play with another point guard in a two lead guard lineup and mentioned that he moves well off the ball and with his BBIQ and ability to stretch the floor he felt he could easily slot into the two position.

Vernon Carey Jr. (Duke)

Has not had contact with the Kings. The big man from Duke recently lost 30 pounds saying, "these past months, it’s definitely helped my athleticism and I’ve gotten more mobile. I move much better. It was an eye-opener for me after the season and made me realize what I had to do at the next level." Vernon is slotted to go somewhere in the mid-second round.

Josh Green (Arizona)

Hey hey! So now, Josh Green has had contact with the Kings. Again, no work out. Green is one of the best defenders in the class and a very high IQ player as well, who could slide right in with the Kings as a classic 3-and-D forward. Green, an Aussie native who moved to the US at 14, credits his friendship with Ben Simmons as one of the reasons for his recent success "(Ben) being able to reach out to me first meant a lot to me personally and it’s awesome being able to reach out to him… just being able to talk to him and him giving me advice has been awesome. He’s a great kid. A great guy and I appreciate our relationship.”

Jaden McDaniels (Washington)

Not had contact with the Kings and when I ask how he might have see himself fitting into to a young team like the Kings he replied, "no, I have not been in contact with them." So suffice to say that the kid ain't coming! On what he brings to an NBA team right away, McDaniels said ,"versatility, being able to play multiple positions and defensively move my feet and guard 1-4... On offense be able to knock down good shots, create for others when I have opportunities and be a competitor and going out and play hard."

Tuesday, Nov. 17

Alekej Pokusevski (Olympiakos/Greece)

There I was, 9 am. Fresh cup of coffee, freshly shaved and wearing a tuxedo I had custom made with his jerseys lining the inside and my fresh Poku tattoo on my forehead... and the man went and cancelled his interview. No idea why. Maybe he didn't get my letters telling him how excited I was. I sent forty of them, but, who knows how the mail system is right now across the pond.

Tyrell Terry (Stanford)

While there wasn't a chance for anyone to ask if he'd had any contact with the Kings, I can say for certain that he didn't work out for the Kings. The mini Trae Young from Stanford did offer up what he felt he can bring immediately to his team: "High level of unselfishness, whether I'm coming off the bench or not. Also a level of work ethic - first in the gym and last out to gain the respect of the roster"

On what NBA players he modeled after: "Steve Nash was who I looked up to. Kobe Bryant and his passion for the game. There's not one player I would compare myself after (today), but I try to take pieces of a lot of other players' game." I would be thrilled to have a guard like Terry as a back-up to De'Aaron Fox next season, but the Kings would probably have to trade down to justify the selection.

Jahmi'us Ramsey (Texas Tech)

Was yet another young man who had an interview, but no workout for the Kings. He did, however, mention that he did a Zoom workout for 22 teams, though he couldn't recall which teams were involved and which weren't. So, progress?

LaMelo Ball (Illawara)

AHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA.

[Editor's note: LaMelo Ball might be the worst interview in NBA history. Nothing meaningful was said in the entirety of his time speaking with assembled media.]

***

Overall, I don't think anyone in the world outside of people cashing checks to be a part of the Kings front office know what will happen tonight. From a myriad of various interviews to an entire lack of workouts, the Kings are a riddle wrapped in a mystery inside an enigma with a decade and a half of mostly crap covering the top of it. For once there's a myriad of prospects I'd be happy the Kings took and a million different moves that could really signal where this franchise is headed. One thing I do know? I'm ready for the latest phase of this damn team to finally start.

Good luck tonight, Kings fans!

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andy_sims
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November 18, 2020 7:43 am

Gawd those Ball children are homely.

RobHessing
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November 18, 2020 8:00 am
Reply to  andy_sims

We’re all God’s children…of course, back in the day Lavar used to kick God’s ass…

richie88
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November 18, 2020 2:13 pm
Reply to  RobHessing

God used to kick Lavar’s ass.

Hobby916
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November 18, 2020 8:00 am

In the Ringer’s latest mock, they have Killian Hayes (!!!) dropping to 12 for the Kings. I don’t think he makes it that far, but that would be awesome.

richie88
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November 18, 2020 2:11 pm
Reply to  Hobby916

The Athletic also has Hayes going to the Kings in its final mock draft. That’d surprise me, but it’d make me very happy if the Kings got him.

Last edited 9 months ago by richie88
eddie41
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November 18, 2020 8:05 am

Utah just traded down to acquire pick #38. To me, that implies several things, one of them being there is plenty of value in picks #35 and #43. And yes, I’m excited about some players that could be available in that range.

RobHessing
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November 18, 2020 8:28 am
Reply to  eddie41

Could also be that they moved down four slots in the 1st to create a Euro stash opportunity in the 2nd. Could also be that they saw several options at 23, figured that one of them would be available at 27, so why not get a free 2nd round pick out of it?

Hopefully you’re right about the 2nd round. Isaiah Thomas is the only impact player for the Kings that came out of the 2nd round in the 21st century. After that you have to go back to 1995 to find Tyus Edney, and ’94 for Michael Smith and Lawrence Funderburke. Vinnie Del Negro was a 2nd round pick at #29 back in ’89. This draft will have to buck the norm for the 2nd round to yield any tangible fruit for the Kings. Fingers crossed.

eddie41
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November 18, 2020 8:47 am
Reply to  RobHessing

Okay then what happens if I name some guys when we’re on the clock at 35, 43 and 52, and they turn out to be good?

RobHessing
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November 18, 2020 8:57 am
Reply to  eddie41

Then they will be the exception and not the rule. And all Kings fans will rejoice, as this is the exact type of lightning in a bottle that this organization needs.

The 2nd round has proven quite useful to savvy front offices over the years, though even those savvy front offices have batting averages that are rather low. It’s the nature of the beast. For every Isaiah Thomas or Manu Ginobli or Nikola Jokic, there are dozens more that never make it. So we can sure hope that the Kings strike gold in the 2nd round – I just wouldn’t count on it.

eddie41
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November 18, 2020 9:00 am
Reply to  RobHessing

Copper. Look for copper!

RobHessing
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November 18, 2020 9:15 am
Reply to  eddie41

“With the 35th pick of the 2020 NBA Draft, the Sacramento Kings select Pai Rites, Center, Goa, India.”

Last edited 9 months ago by RobHessing
eddie41
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November 18, 2020 9:31 am
Reply to  RobHessing

With the 43 pick, the Kings select Harold Miner Jr., combo-position, from Brown Couch, Michigan.

RobHessing
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November 18, 2020 9:59 am
Reply to  eddie41

Jay Scrubb has to be the Kangziest actual name on the draft board.

eddie41
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November 18, 2020 8:48 am
Reply to  eddie41

Here’s a thought: Utah Jazz could be the team that gave a first round promise to Payton Pritchard.

RikSmits
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November 18, 2020 10:50 am

who knows how the mail system is right now across the pond.

It’s fine; no elections, nor voter suppression here.

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