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Kings Pulse: 2021 Draft Class Preview

Before the season begins, we take a look at the draft class ahead.

Before we begin our coverage of the 2020-21 Sacramento Kings season, we had to sneak in a quick preview of the 2021 draft class. After all, a high pick might be the best possible result of the season anyway.

And can you really blame us? This draft class is mouthwatering. There are at least five prospects that would change the trajectory of the Kings franchise completely.

Cade Cunningham is obviously the prize, but USC big man Evan Mobley also has franchise player potential. He's a center that can defend the rim, defend in space, and defend on the perimeter. On offense he has the standard big man skill set plus a blossoming three-point shot.

Jalen Green, Jalen Suggs, and BJ Boston look like elite scorers. Each would be a spectacular fit next to De'Aaron Fox, and could eventually bring a top ten offense back to Sacramento for the first time since 2004-05.

The Kings have needed a big wing forever, and there are a handful of high level options that could go in the lottery. Jonathan Kuminga and Ziaire Williams are extremely well rounded and will fight for a top five selection. Jalen Johnson, Scottie Barnes and Terrance Clarke could also end up in the top ten.

Eight of our 12 favorite players are either 6-foot-7 or 6-foot-8. Can they play small forward? Hell yes they can.

Check out the episode for our first impressions of the top of the 2021 draft class and let us know in the comments if you have any early favorites.

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RORDOG
December 8, 2020 12:27 pm

Lol. At least wait until the season starts off slow to bust out the draft content!

andy_sims
December 8, 2020 12:33 pm
Reply to  RORDOG

No time! Lottery and draft are only a few months away!

BestHyperboleEver
December 8, 2020 12:46 pm
Reply to  RORDOG

Yeah, Haliburton’s will hasn’t even been crushed yet!

But seriously, this is a fun college prospect season to follow. Normally, I’m very pro-prospects going that G-League/Euro route, but this season it’s a shame we won’t be able to see more of guys like Green, Nix and Kuminga.

Last edited 1 month ago by BestHyperboleEver
Brenden
Member
December 8, 2020 12:49 pm
Reply to  RORDOG

College basketball just started! lol

RobHessing
December 8, 2020 4:05 pm
Reply to  RORDOG

You’re lucky that we’re not already looking at the ’22 draft.

Timmy_13
December 8, 2020 12:37 pm

As is tradition
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Last edited 1 month ago by Timmy_13
CarinaM707
December 8, 2020 1:13 pm
Reply to  Timmy_13

College season has started, coulda had a podcast a couple weeks ago 😉

Brenden
Member
December 8, 2020 1:41 pm
Reply to  CarinaM707

It was helpful to get to see some of them play their first few games at the college level.

ZillersCat
December 8, 2020 1:28 pm
Reply to  Timmy_13

The Way This Is
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ZillersCat
December 8, 2020 1:31 pm
Reply to  Timmy_13

The Way RORDOG Style ..
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RORDOG
December 8, 2020 4:52 pm
Reply to  ZillersCat

I’m officially in diet mode! I got up to 180, and that’s the official start weight for my annual diet. I have to switch to cereal/salad/nuts/cheese/apples/beans now til around April.

Kingsguru21
December 8, 2020 5:17 pm
Reply to  RORDOG

180? Holy shit. I ain’t weighed 180 since I was probably a sophomore in HS. And I was skinny then.

Jeesh. 180. Now I’m straight up jealous.

RORDOG
December 8, 2020 7:35 pm
Reply to  Kingsguru21

I’m only 5’9 1/2” though. I figure if I always start a diet at 180, then quit dieting at ~165, then I basically can eat/drink whatever I want 6 months out of the year.

Kingsguru21
December 9, 2020 7:01 am
Reply to  RORDOG

You’re so lazy. It would be so much easier to grow 3 inches so you can pack on more pounds.

I don’t know what we’re going to do with you Fake Bratz.

Otis
December 9, 2020 8:59 am
Reply to  RORDOG

That will change, ROR. Think I’ve mentioned this before, but here’s how it went for me:

20’s – could eat or drink whatever I wanted, work out a lot or not, and still stayed pretty lean

30’s – had to do either in moderation, but didn’t need to do both

40’s – had to either eat extremely healthy or work out a ton to stay at weight

50’s – have to do both consistently just to stay under two bills

There are three certainties in life – death, taxes and your metabolism betraying you.

Timmy_13
December 9, 2020 9:48 am
Reply to  RORDOG

We’re almost the same height and I kinda got scared when I weighed 182 last April. Now I’m down to 172! You can do it!

BestHyperboleEver
December 9, 2020 7:00 am
Reply to  Kingsguru21

My high school playing weight for freshman year football (and basketball, I suppose) was about 185. At that’s the last I’ve seen of a 1 it that hundreds place.

Kingsguru21
December 9, 2020 7:09 am

Yeah I creeped over 200 lbs when I was 18 and been well over since.

Otis
December 9, 2020 8:50 am

Ugh, I’ve definitely added some COVID weight. Worked out at home a ton and ate well when we went into quarantine in March, so I was right around the 190 mark in May. If I get under that, I feel like I’m losing my “old man strength”. So it was great, and then ran out of steam.

The other day? Weighed in at 210.

“I do got a weight problem. I can’t ‘weight” to eat.” – Robin Harris

Kingsguru21
December 9, 2020 8:55 am
Reply to  Otis

Bebe’s kids don’t die! They multiply!

BestHyperboleEver
December 9, 2020 9:44 am
Reply to  Otis

Yeah, I’ve been working out okay, but my diet has gone completely to shit during COVID.

Otis
December 9, 2020 10:46 am

I started out good this morning, had a big bowl of cottage cheese – and then three of these:
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rockbottom
December 8, 2020 12:48 pm

Sadly, history indicates at least half will under achieve ! Lebron is not walking thru that door !

andy_sims
December 8, 2020 1:34 pm
Reply to  rockbottom

So, you’re saying that a once-in-a-generation player is unlikely to be available in this draft?

Show your meth math.

Want2win
December 8, 2020 12:49 pm

I’m more concerned with who we might pick up with Atlanta’s 22 first round pick via OKC? Wait nvm

Adamsite
Nostradumbass 14
Nostradumbass 14
December 8, 2020 12:53 pm

Eight of our 12 favorite players are either 6-foot-7 or 6-foot-8. Can they play small forward? Hell yes they can.

Kings are getting the 13th pick, aren’t they.

BestHyperboleEver
December 8, 2020 1:07 pm
Reply to  Adamsite

There are good players there too! Not that rankings mean anything at this point, but there are guys that aren’t even getting 1st round (or any round) buzz that would have made my 2020 top 10. Heck, adding to the value of a top pick this year, is that it would mean a high 2nd rounder as well. And there is going to be good talent there as well. For example, if we could pick up someone like Kessler Edwards in the second round, that would be huge.

andy_sims
December 8, 2020 1:35 pm

Who names a kid “Kessler?”

Kosta
December 8, 2020 2:43 pm
Reply to  andy_sims

I don’t know, but I’ve got questions for BJ Boston’s parents.

RORDOG
December 8, 2020 4:55 pm
Reply to  andy_sims

It’s like naming your kid Mickey because it’s what you were drinking when the kid was conceived.

andy_sims
December 8, 2020 1:32 pm

I really hope that when Kaminsky was introduced to the team, they said, “Frank? The tank.”

RAP87
December 8, 2020 4:23 pm

Really interested to see how both Green and Kuminga would fair playing in the G league. too bad it might take a while for them to be able to play. Kuminga is my current #2 on my big board. Yup that early and I already have my big board up and ready!

Mike120
December 8, 2020 6:13 pm

I mentioned Mobley a week or so ago. I’ll stick with him. We hopefully have our backcourt and PF for the future. I prioritize a C over a SF for the next building block.

RAP87
December 8, 2020 6:33 pm
Reply to  Mike120

If Woodard can show he is a legit 3 and D in the NBA and Bagley can stay healthy and continues to improve and we draft Mobley? Man that would be a nice core to move forward. Fox, Haliburton, Woodard, Bagley and Mobley as the starting 5 would be really nice.

BestHyperboleEver
December 9, 2020 7:09 am
Reply to  Mike120

I like Mobley a lot, but A) I don’t think there’s anyone on the current roster that should be part of the consideration of who to draft. Certainly nobody not named Fox. B) You can never have enough wing initiator types. And the Kings have none. And the top of this draft is full of them. Obviously, Mobley is a great talent and he’d be great to have on the roster, but he’d be behind the wings like Cunningham, Johnson, Kuminga and Barnes for me. Oh, and if it hasn’t been well established yet, I’m all about passing and playmaking.

Ralph_Furleys_Tailor
December 8, 2020 7:13 pm

I remain cautiously pessimistic that the Kings earn a top 5 draft pick and manage to grab the worst player.

CarinaM707
December 8, 2020 8:30 pm

Did my first draft sim of the season and Sacramento jumped 5 spots to land Cade, Orlando jumped 7 spots to take Suggs at second overall. Did tankathon hear me listening to the Kings Pulse draft podcast just now? 😂

jdwhit
December 8, 2020 10:49 pm
Reply to  CarinaM707

comment image

BestHyperboleEver
December 9, 2020 6:51 am
Reply to  jdwhit

Kuminga is a pretty damned good consolation prize.

I got the Kings jumping to 3 and taking Green. Who is obviously a fantastic talent, but might be my last choice out of the top 7 there (Cunningham, Suggs, Green, Mobley, Barnes, Jalen Johnson, Kuminga.)

That’s how much better this draft is. A guy that would have easily been #1 in 2020 is coming in around 7 for me at the moment.

Last edited 1 month ago by BestHyperboleEver
Kingsguru21
December 9, 2020 7:49 am

So what you’re saying is that this would be a good year to pick high?

BestHyperboleEver
December 9, 2020 7:52 am
Reply to  Kingsguru21

It’s a great year to pick high. And a good year to pick anywhere. And a great year to have multiple 1sts. Next year will be a great year for multiple 1sts as well.

Chent
December 9, 2020 8:31 am

What do you think about some of the guys expected to go later in the first like Terrence Clarke and James Bouknight?

BestHyperboleEver
December 9, 2020 9:30 am
Reply to  Chent

There are a number of guys I like there. I’ve talked about guys like James Preston and Kessler Edwards a lot. But yeah, there’s a whole tier of 6’5-6’7 guys in there that have good upside like those guys Christopher, Johnson (Louisville version), Moody, Henry, Giddey, Begerin, King, etc.

I think they make a really strong post-lottery tier.

Kingsguru21
December 9, 2020 8:56 am

You took that comment way too seriously.

BestHyperboleEver
December 9, 2020 9:27 am
Reply to  Kingsguru21

Yeah, honestly, I tend to not take things seriously enough. So I over compensate by giving sincere answers even if that’s not what people are looking for.

RAP87
December 9, 2020 8:10 am

Kuminga is my current #2 on my very very very early draft board behind Cade. Excited to see him play really soon whenever the G-league starts. Obviously a lot can change right now since this upcoming draft is really stacked. But man if we can can actually get Kuminga next year. I’ll be ecstatic!

BestHyperboleEver
December 9, 2020 8:44 am
Reply to  RAP87

Yeah, I can get behind that. At the moment, I might have Suggs in the #2 slot, but I wouldn’t argue with any of Green, Kuminga, Johnson, Mobley. And that isn’t even talking about guys like Boston, Williams, the other Johnson, Garuba, etc.

eddie41
December 9, 2020 7:15 pm

BHE, watch the last 5 minutes of the Fla St, Indiana game plus overtime. I think Scottie Barnes’ foot speed and athleticism is sort of like Dedric Lawson (now playing in Korea) or post-injury Jabari Parker. Really slow-footed. In those 10 minutes, one TO, another TO with 5 seconds left that the ref got wrong, plus his passes deflected twice, and got swatted after trying lower his shoulder into someone like Saddiq Bey. The highlights will show his 5 points in overtime, but watching those 10 minutes tells another story … like 2nd round.

MidtownMike
December 8, 2020 9:03 pm

Did my comment get deleted!?!?

andy_sims
December 9, 2020 7:49 am
Reply to  MidtownMike

No, it’s just that your eyes are closed.

MidtownMike
December 9, 2020 9:57 am
Reply to  andy_sims

Why the need to be a douche?

How come it got deleted, I highly doubt it broke any rules and I thought it was kind of funny/cool to post that I own G1C in some weird little virtual world.

jdwhit
December 8, 2020 10:41 pm

The 2021 Draft be like:

comment image

ZillersCat
December 9, 2020 11:10 am
Reply to  jdwhit

Can they play SF?

Bbmuteman
December 9, 2020 4:22 am

Is it possible to make it into the playoffs as a 10th seed and still win the lottery? That would he the best. Get cade Cunningham and also making it into the postseason.

BestHyperboleEver
December 9, 2020 6:47 am
Reply to  Bbmuteman

I mentioned in the other thread, I think lottery slots are determined after the play-in games. So, then, no. But I could be wrong.

Bbmuteman
December 9, 2020 8:19 am

That would make more sense and be more fair actually.

NorCalKingsFan
December 9, 2020 10:37 pm
Reply to  Bbmuteman

yeah, you just need to make the playoffs and then acquire a lottery pick via trade

aplumley
December 9, 2020 7:16 am

I’m not on the tank wagon. I don’t think this draft holds a candle to 2018, when we had the #2 pick, and that has hardly vaulted the Kings into contention. I see this draft as one with a lot of players with unproven upside with very few high floor guys. Not much different than any other draft.

BestHyperboleEver
December 9, 2020 7:39 am
Reply to  aplumley

I mean, the 2018 draft could have vaulted us into contention if we had made the right pick. Cunningham isn’t quite the prospect Doncic was because he doesn’t have the pedigree, but he’s really close. I’d say the rest of the top tier is better overall than 2018. Green is every bit the prospect Ayton was. Then 2020 has deeper tiers after that (Trae Young, JJJ vs. Mobley, Kuminga, Johnson, Suggs, Barnes). There are Mikel Bridges (#12 in 2018 and is looking like a good pick there) level prospects that are likely to end up at the end of the 1st or even fall into the 2nd in 2020.

Kingsguru21
December 9, 2020 7:51 am

People are going to read this comment and go: ‘He means the 2021 draft, right?’

Well you certainly can’t mean the 2020 draft……

BestHyperboleEver
December 9, 2020 7:52 am
Reply to  Kingsguru21

Crap. Yes, 2021.

ForKingsandCountry
December 9, 2020 2:37 pm
Reply to  aplumley

It’s early but I have a tiny bit more faith in the person who should be making the pick this time around. It can’t be overstated how important it is to simply have a competent group of people running the draft. This year it sure felt like we had a competent group of people running the draft.

eddie41
December 9, 2020 7:54 am

never too early. You could update it mid-season and have plenty of listeners. But please, no tanking.

kings4ever
December 9, 2020 8:31 am

First time I heard of any of these guys…

Cade Cunningham plays like Kyrie Irving. The “prize” is Kyrie Irving? Obviously the guy is an incredible talent but I have no use for him on the Kings. No use. Fox is equivalent talent, a lot of stronger, a lot more seasoned and 22.

Evan Mobley is a twig. He’s two years away from being one year away. We are going to “tank” for a twig??? Woodward would break him in two and then use him as dental floss.

I will say this about Mobley this. If he can pattern his game after Kevin Durant, then he can be something. He has same narrow lean build as KD, so it is probably inadvisable for him to bulk up too much.

I disagree with the assessment above, the kid should try to be a combo forward. His advantage is his mobility and coordination for being so long, not banging in the paint.

Jalen Green – yes please – hes got the young Vince Carter vibe to his game – he may worth tanking for lol .

Jalen Suggs – I don’t see it – he’s ok average athlete

BJ Boston – a high schooler already shooting step back 3s lol — yeah I could see this kid next to Fox

Jonathan Kuminga – this is the type of player we need, a frontline player who can create make plays off the dribble. Just off initial impression, I like him better than Mobley

Chent
December 9, 2020 8:50 am
Reply to  kings4ever

A 6’7 Kyrie is a legit all-star, I think your underrated Kyrie a little, but his personality makes him kind of annoying so I understand not valuing him as much.

I agree Kuminga is a great fit, but I would personally choose other players over him.

The order I would place on these guys is:

1st tier-Cunningham, Green, Kuminga, Suggs, Mobley.

2nd- Zaire Williams, Boston, Jalen Johnson, Scottie Barnes.

BestHyperboleEver
December 9, 2020 9:40 am
Reply to  Chent

Cunningham isn’t really at all like Kyrie. But yeah, a 6’7/7’0 Irving that’s healthy engaged on both ends like Cunningham is a perennial MVP candidate. He’s also a lot stronger than Fox and, of course, there’s no reason they couldn’t play together.

And the idea that Suggs is an average athlete is, well, I’ll just say that doesn’t jibe with any other assessments or what I’ve seen of him.

Overall, I agree with Chent’s tiers, with Cunningham in a slightly higher tier on his own.

Last edited 1 month ago by BestHyperboleEver

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