It was quite the eventful season for the Sacramento Kings, both on the court and off. The impending sale of the Kings hovered over the team for much of the year, but Sacramento's sales pitch to the NBA was a success, and now the Kings find themselves under new ownership with a new head coach and general manager in Sacramento.
On the court, the Kings struggled to a 28-54 record. Sacramento showed promise at times and had one of the better offenses in the league, but a terrible defense kept it from having any real success.
DeMarcus Cousins also continues to be a bit of an enigma, as the big man ran into some disciplinary problems throughout the year. Cousins is one of the most talented bigs in the entire league, but his questionable attitude has the Kings wondering whether they want to make him a key part of their future going forward.
Sacramento needs plenty of help to become a contender again, and a good place to start is the draft, where new general manager Pete D'Alessandro will look to make a splash. The Kings have another top-10 pick this year, and they have had some success with those in recent years, with Cousins and Tyreke Evans proving to be solid contributors. But last year's pick at No. 5 in Thomas Robinson didn't work out, as he was traded to the Houston Rockets midway through the season.
The Kings hold two picks in the draft, with one in the first round at No. 7 and one in the second round at No. 36. Sacramento is reportedly looking to add another pick toward the end of the first round, and it is dangling Jimmer Fredette as trade bait.
Shooting guard: Tyreke Evans (restricted free agent), Marcus Thornton
Sacramento has just over $42 million committed in salary for next season and it has a key decision to make when it comes to the future of Evans. The talented 24-year-old is a restricted free agent and will likely garner some serious interest. However, the Kings will almost certainly try to keep him and make him part of their core for years to come. Johnson and Douglas could also become restricted free agents, but they haven't yet been given a qualifying offer.
Sacramento could use help in quite a few areas. While the offense was solid overall and Thomas did a generally good job manning the point, a bigger difference maker could be taken, especially considering the amount of great players at that position around the league.
The Kings also need improvement in their frontcourt in terms of both rebounding and defense. Drafting a big man would also provide some nice insurance if things with Cousins don't work out.
Finally, the Kings need some more help on the wing, as it would be nice to find an upgrade over Salmons or to simply add some depth.
Sacramento has been linked to a bunch of names and will have a plethora of options. Michigan's Trey Burke (scouting report) dropping to No. 7 would be a pleasant surprise, although Lehigh's C.J. McCollum (scouting report) or Syracuse's Michael Carter-Williams (scouting report) would be excellent consolation prizes. The Kings really like McCollum, and he would be a nice fit next to Evans.
For frontcourt help, some possibilities for the Kings include UNLV's Anthony Bennett (scouting report), Indiana's Cody Zeller (scouting report) and Pittsburgh's Steven Adams (scouting report). Bennett may not fall to No. 7, but if he did, pairing him with Cousins would be a very intriguing option.
On the wing, UCLA's Shabazz Muhammad (scouting report) is an option, although taking him at No. 7 may be a bit of a reach. The Kings have shown interest in New Mexico's Tony Snell (scouting report) and Michigan's Tim Hardaway Jr. (scouting report), which is why they're shopping Fredette for a pick later in the first round.