As the 2020-21 NBA season progresses there are many possibilities in terms of Sacramento Kings trade scenarios. Outlined ahead is how I think every Sacramento Kings player fits into three different ‘trade-ability tiers’. Those three tiers are – Untouchable, Wait and See, and Completely Tradeable.
Kings Cool Off After Hot Start
For the first time since 2003, The Sacramento Kings started a season 2-0! This gave many Kings fans something to cheer about for the first time in a long time. Along with LOTS of false optimism.
After that exciting 2-0 start, the Kings fell back into their spot in the western conference pecking order. As of Friday January 22nd, Sacramento is 5-10 overall and losers of their 9 of 11 games.
This recent skid does not in any way mean the Kings need to sell the farm, start over, re-build, or any other synonym usually associated with the Kings chronically poor performances. Though, in my opinion, this Kings roster at its projected peak is not a championship team. Improving through internal player development, the draft, trades, and free agency are all ways the Kings can and will improve in the years to come.
Sacramento Kings Trade Scenarios
Below, I breakdown where I think each Sacramento Kings player fits into three potential ‘trade-ability tiers’. ‘Untouchable’, ‘Wait and See’, ‘Tradeable’. Where do your favorite and least favorite Kings players fit in?
Sacramento Kings new general manager Monte McNair seems to be building the team around Fox and Haliburton, whom he has touted as part of the Sacramento Kings ‘young core’. The other parts of that ‘young core’ are Marvin Bagley III and Buddy Hield, whom I will address later in the article.
Fox and Haliburton have the potential to form a competitive, winning, DYNAMIC duo for years to come – if they work hard and are provided the necessary tools to grow into that role.
Haliburton is already turning heads early in his NBA career, with some saying he was the steal of the draft. Haliburton has been in early talks for the rookie of the year award.
The possible Kings trade scenarios are going to be interesting to watch as the season progresses, but I do not think any of them will realistically involve De’Aaron Fox or Tyrese Haliburton.
Wait and See
Marvin Bagley III fits into a category of his own. Bagley III has been oft-injured during his first three seasons in the NBA, which is why he is still in the ‘wait and see’ category.
Bagley III, the second selection in the 2018 NBA draft, has shown flashes of potential in his limited time on the floor. Bagley III is averaging almost 15 points and 8 rebounds per game during his career. He has improved his three-point shot quite well actually, shooting just 18% in 2019-20 and now 37% through 15 games of the 2020-21 season.
From the article Marvin Bagley III, NBA Big Men and the Three-Point Shot, “According to Brooks Anderson of ‘Sports Raid’, “Through Bagley’s first 50 games of the 2018-19 season, he hit 16 threes, only once making more than one in a game. But he made 13 in his final 12 games, including 2+ makes in five games down the stretch. He’s made 3-of-9 this (201 preseason, so he clearly plans to keep shooting.”
From Sportrac, Bagley III is signed through the 2021-22 season, with a qualifying offer for the 2022-23 season.
If the Kings get an insane trade offer they can’t refuse for Bagley III, they should go for it. In my opinion, though, the Kings should at least wait until the end of the season to make a decision on Bagley III. The Sacramento Kings trade scenarios will open up A LOT if they do decide to ‘shop’ Bagley III on the trade market.
All kidding aside, every player on the Sacramento Kings besides Fox, Haliburton and Bagley III (for now) are the only players who aren’t potential trade assets. The Kings seem to be and should be more than willing to listen to trade offers and shop the rest of the players on the roster.
Among the ‘completely tradeable’ group, there are a few highly sought after players that stick out to me.
Richaun Holmes, Buddy Hield, Harrison Barnes, Nemanja Bjelica, and Hassan Whiteside are a few of the players on the Kings roster that many other NBA teams would like to have. All of these players have value in the trade market – especially to a playoff team trying to fill a need. Cory Joseph could also be a piece that a team might want as a stopper on defense if they think it will help their championship push. His salary, along with the salaries of other ‘tradeable’ Kings makes some trades difficult.
Barring drastic changes due to COVID, the NBA trade deadline is March 25th. As the playoffs inch nearer, injuries creep up on teams, opponents make moves to improve, etc. it is almost inevitable that the Sacramento Kings roster will be different on the morning of March 26, 2021.
There are MANY possible Sacramento Kings trade scenarios. My prediction is the Kings team will look much different in April than it will at the end of January.
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