NBA Draft Lottery 2011: Sacramento Kings Hope For Rare Luck

The Sacramento Kings finished tied with the New Jersey Nets for the fifth-worst record in the NBA in 2010-11; when teams finished tied in the standings, they combine and split their lottery combinations, with the winner of a coin toss earning any extras on the table. Triumph! The Kings won a coin toss, and thus have a 7.6 percent chance of winning pick No. 1.

TEAM NEEDS

The Kings' front office has focused on wanting to add another ball-handler and more shooting. That could mean a true point guard, or another combo guard to play off of Tyreke Evans, or a playmaking small forward. That's the position at which the Kings are thinnest; Francisco Garcia, Donte Greene and Omri Casspi jockeyed for love there last season, and it's pretty obvious that none of them are currently starter-level contributors, at least for more than a couple weeks at a time.

DeMarcus Cousins showed an ability to play both at center (with a smaller partner like Jason Thompson or since-traded Carl Landry at power forward) and at power forward (next to center Samuel Dalembert, a free agent). So pairing Cousins with a young big man could be desirable; Dalembert is pushing 30, and could get pricey.

IF THEY WIN

You have to think Sacramento will take a long look at Kyrie Irving if by the graces of all that is holy they win the No. 1 pick. Picking Irving could push Marcus Thornton to the bench or Evans to small forward, but the Duke guard is good enough that you pick first and figure it out later. Derrick Williams would be a strong option at No. 1 or 2, as he could push for immediate minutes at either small forward or power forward. Enes Kanter is an intriguing option, though given Cousins' proclivity to score more of a roleplaying big man like Jonas Valanciunas could be the pick at No. 3.

PREVIOUS LUCK

The Kings have captured the No. 1 pick once in their storied lotto history: 1989. Unfortunately, the top prospect that season was Pervis Ellison. The Kings had the No. 1 chance in the 2009 Blake Griffin Sweepstakes, but were leapfrogged by three teams, and ended up with No. 4 (Evans). The Kings had the No. 3 chance last year, but ended up with No. 5 (Cousins). Will Lady Luck answer the phone this time?

For more on the Kings, visit Sactown Royalty and SB Nation Bay Area.

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