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Sacramento’s pick of Davion Mitchell gets mixed reviews

Local and national pundits alike seem to like Mitchell's experience and talent, but are confused by his fit in a crowded Sacramento backcourt.

Draft grades are inherently silly, because who the hell really knows how these players will turn out without actually seeing them play, but they're also fun. The Kings surprised just about everyone yesterday with their selection of Davion Mitchell, so it's only fair that initial reviews are all over the place.

NBC Sports: B-

This grade can improve, especially if Mitchell's role becomes clearer and the Kings manage to open up rotational minutes by trading Wright and Hield in the coming days. But for now, it's a head-scratcher, especially with players like Moses Moody still on the board.

Gambling on a culture changer makes sense, but drafting a guard in the top-10 to play behind your franchise player is going to take some explaining.

CBS Sports: A+

I thought Mitchell was a top seven prospect in this draft, and there's great value here at No. 9. Tenacity and skill combine to make him an outstanding prospect. His defensive intensity is unique and should translate quickly to the pros.

Bleacher Report: B

Can the Kings get by with a lot of minutes running Mitchell alongside De'Aaron Fox and Tyrese Haliburton? I'm not sure, but I can't wait to see them try.

SB Nation: C

Mitchell feels like an odd pick for a Kings team that already has two great guards in De'Aaron Fox and Tyrese Haliburton. He is one of the smallest and oldest players in this draft, turning 23 years old before his rookie season. We had Mitchell at No. 21 on our draft board, so this isn't our favorite pick, but his burst and defense should make him a productive pro for a long time as long as he continues to shoot it as well as he did during his final year at Baylor.

Yahoo! Sports: B-

Mitchell is an incredible defender and skilled playmaker who rose to the occasion in the NCAA tournament. He is a commanding presence both on and off the floor, even at 6-foot-2. At 22 years old, he will help right away, but how he fits into a backcourt featuring De'Aaron Fox and Tyrese Haliburton remains a question.

What did you think of Sacramento's picks of Davion Mitchell and Neemias Queta?  Vote below!

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Corneroffense
July 30, 2021 1:57 pm

It’s ‘The Process’. No, it’s more like they couldn’t decide on a backup to Wagner, and Orlando snatched him, and they freaked out. In football where you have 22 starters ‘best player available’ is OK. In basketball where chemistry matters, not so much. McGenius has a lot of explaining to do, but it doesn’t look like anybody’s going to make him. Since they never worked out Mitchell, ‘BPA’ sounds more like an excuse than a reason. And what about the two trades? They could have had Kuzma, Harrell and Valanciunas for Buddy and Bagley, and drafted can’t-miss gunner Bouknight at #10, and also had #22. Instead, they’re trying to assemble a 6’6” and under team. Why is the local media collectively shrugging?

AmateurNerd
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July 30, 2021 3:17 pm
Reply to  Corneroffense

Apparently they interviewed him at the Combine. And do workouts matter much for a 3-year college player with so much tape against top-shelf NCAA talent? The fit is odd (for now), but the selection itself is fine. BPA all day. Worry about fit when you’re one player away from the Finals.
Also, as for the trades: Was Monte supposed to cut DC’s phone lines and stop them from swooping in and offering Westbrook? Was he supposed to call LA and tell them what a stupid idea it would be for them to acquire an aging non-shooter/spacing-killer? I’m not exactly a McNair apologist, but nothing indicates that what happened yesterday with the trade was in his power to stop.

murraytant
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July 30, 2021 11:08 pm
Reply to  AmateurNerd

if you are LAL, would you rather have Russ or Buddy?

murraytant
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July 30, 2021 11:07 pm
Reply to  Corneroffense

it does seem perplexing. I think they wanted Wagner and should have taken Sengun but Mitchell brings a unique skill- intensity + defense. Wagner’s ceiling is a role player like Bridges for the Suns. Sengun is a risk. Moody has a high floor but a limited ceiling and no unique skill. Mitchell has a unique and special skill that can be built around.
My issue with him is that he is redundant- Kings have too many guards and had to clean some of that cupboard today by selling Wright on the cheap.
Quetta has a unique skill set as well- a 7 footer with passing skills and can block shots

The LAL trade was called off by LAL, not Kings.and getting Jonas would have cost the #9. As it was, NOP dumped Bledsoe and Adams and had to switch #10 for #17 and got Valantunas. I suspect that Griz felt this was a better deal than getting Bagley. The #10 pick was included in the proposed Griz trade so Bouknight was off the table. Your comment is a bit “off”

1951
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July 30, 2021 1:59 pm

Where did my comments go?

comment image

nonstripedzebra
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July 30, 2021 2:10 pm

I am amiss, more than I have been in recent memory. Let’s be clear frustration isn’t on Mitchell respectfully. I hope he does well and enjoys his time here. But the logic and or rationale I cant seem to place. And when I do find an argument, I am left with less than desirable outcomes.

I assume a Buddy deal is imminent or hoped for by McNair. So is his belief in 3 guard lineups potentially working. And the character driven selections since the Cousins era are at least stressed at every opportunity they can be.

But even with guarded Monte, the consistent public rationale of decisions helping a desired playoff push over more rebuilding rhetoric that reflects a likely bottom 10 record I think is at the core of the problem. That motivation underpins the justification of drafting a 23 year old by seasons start, oppose to upside selections or dart throws for league top talent. Let alone complicates returns for presently impactful players simply being exchanged for future assets.

This tightrope is not only unconvincing for its desired goals, it feels a bit insulting. It implies that a 15 year playoff drought ending will make me agreeable or satiated from whats been perpetual failure. For my sake it wont. I expect that this team should be or will be a rebuilding project in due time. And where will that leave a 25 or 6 year old Mitchell. If the Kings want to stop being the laughing stock of the league, they can start by admitting what they are, which is a bad team that doesn’t maximize that truth ever. Let alone the benefits that come such a truth.

That again doesn’t sit on Mitchell’s shoulders fairly, but the problems with this team are bigger than him. Last night I look at the likes of the the Pistons, Rockets, Thunder who in simply a season or two have built a core comparable to ours in talent, with assets in a lot of cases to boot. All projects whose justification haven’t been to have a spring basketball or 4 and out. The irony of course is because of that fact they very well might see the postseason before us. Yet all with aspirations for more.

RobHessing
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July 30, 2021 3:13 pm

I can be absolutely wrong, and time will prove it as it pertains to some of the following players. But this is the list of available players that I had ahead of Mitchell on my list:
Moses Moody
James Bouknight
Alperen Sengun
Jalen Johnson
Keon Johnson
Ziare Williams
Kai Jones

My guess is that Mitchell winds up better than a majority of these guys, but there will be a pearl or two that the Kings whiffed on (looking at Bouknight and Moody, mostly).

Things change, and I don’t sweat the roster composition, because the roster needs a lot of work. Hopefully we’ll get to see a lot of Mitchell this year so we’ll have an idea of what we have prior to our 2022 lottery pick.

murraytant
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July 30, 2021 11:11 pm
Reply to  RobHessing

I thought Moody and Bouknight were better fits and I liked Sengun. I had Mitchell above all the others

PhutureKings
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July 30, 2021 3:35 pm

Mitchell is what’s up. He brings a mindset and attitude that can literally redefine the culture here. Even if he is what he is from a skills and growth standpoint, he’s already a good player. His ability to nerd out with Haliburton over game film and inspire Fox to play the best defense of his life will be a helluva impact on this team.

I’m really stoked on the pick, and while I would’ve liked Moody or Wagner as a wing, we can make trades or sign FA to fill that gap for now.

As far as fit, it’s easy 3-guard sets and a dope rotation of Fox, Hali, Mitchell and Davis. We can trade Wright and Buddy to clear the logjam. Not a reason to dismiss this as a bad pick.

Mitchell wins and demands it from his teammates.

PhutureKings
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July 30, 2021 3:48 pm

One less guard. Wright was traded for…Tristan Thompson

Want2win
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July 30, 2021 4:49 pm

meh

SPTSJUNKIE
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July 30, 2021 5:04 pm

If any analyst wants to question the talent or the value, that’s their right and what draft grades are all about (as relatively worthless as they are).

But I can’t take any seriously that claim we got a great player and tremendous value but Mark us down due to roster fit on a 31 win team.

Argue Mitchell wasn’t the BPA all you want. Time will tell. But any analyst arguing short term fit over BPA loses a lot of credibility to me.

nonstripedzebra
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July 30, 2021 5:55 pm
Reply to  SPTSJUNKIE

I agree for the most part. And draft grades are dumb and a reflection of simply preconceived notions of a player. But I do think sometimes when one critiques roster fit it extends past position and includes age, upside and generally timeline. In that respect I do think there is a reasonable critique, as the drafting of a 23 year old come the season tip off, historically suggests the growth plate and drastic improvement is less likely. Something that begins to feel even more narrow when the size and outlier single season production are taken into account.

Framing those concerns I think would support a critique in the inverse. At 31 wins, this team is not very good, and unlikely to drastically change their record next year. Why are they drafting a player that’s in large part rationalized on present value in my point of view.

That’s my feelings. I think Mitchell will be a bit outlier and a productive NBA player. But I do think their is likely diminished upside at his age, if from his end or from the Kings likely record and timeline over the duration of his rookie scale. Those aspects makes the benefits and or rationale poor for the selection in relation to the team longterm IMO.

Last edited 4 months ago by nonstripedzebra
nonstripedzebra
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July 30, 2021 5:40 pm

This trade is stupid in concept, ugly in play, and expensive for no reason.

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