Next up in my series analyzing each NBA team’s offseason is the Sacramento Kings. The Kings have slowly built a strong foundation and most importantly, a young one. With players like DeMarcus Cousins, Tyreke Evans, Isaiah Thomas, and now Thomas Robinson, the Kings have perhaps the best young talent in the league. With the maturity of these young players, combined with veteran leadership, they are poised for a large improvement over last season’s 22-44 record.
The Kings haven’t been that active this offseason; however, the moves they did make were very beneficial to their team. They were able to keep their own restricted free agent Jason Thompson without overpaying, while also leaving cap room to pursue other free agents. Their top signing was free agent point guard Aaron Brooks. This was a solid sign for the team because it provides some veteran leadership—a huge asset for such a young team. They were also able to acquire James Johnson from the Toronto Raptors for a second-round draft pick in 2014. This provides them a solid option at the small forward position.
In terms of player ability, Aaron Brooks has shown that he belongs in this league, and will most likely play as a backup to Isaiah Thomas. This may allow Jimmer Fredette to get more time at the shooting guard position, as he is more of a scorer, as was evident throughout his collegiate career. This offseason move provides the Kings with more depth at the guard position while they addressed a depth need in their front court via the 2012 NBA Draft.
With the fifth-overall selection in the draft, the Kings decided to draft their power forward of the future in the 6’10’’ Kansas star Thomas Robinson. Although they just re-signed Jason Thompson, this is just somewhat of a security blanket as Thomas Robinson is developed and integrated into the system. The Kings bolstered their young talent through this move and it will benefit them immensely. By adding Robinson to their frontcourt, this will take a lot of pressure off of DeMarcus Cousins. Robinson is a double-double machine and will be a great addition to an already-proven player in Cousins. If Robinson develops like most believe he will, then the Kings will have one of the better front courts in the league.
Although the Kings only made a few moves this offseason, they have created a core nucleus of young talent that rivals that of any other NBA team. Much confidence has been instilled in these young players, but I believe they will develop into a solid playoff-contending team. Also, by adding veteran players, a more balanced atmosphere is created. These young players can learn and better their game by playing with these established veterans. The Sacramento Kings are on their way to success and their offseason moves have poised them to achieve their goal of taking the next step; therefore, I award them the offseason grade of: