2014 NBA Draft: Toronto Raptors Should Pursue Trade With Sacramento Kings For 8th Overall Pick

Dave Sandford/NBAE via Getty Images

Dave Sandford/NBAE via Getty Images

With the order of the upcoming NBA Draft now set, those fortunate enough to have secured a place within the lottery are weighing the many options that come with ownership of a top-10 pick in an obviously talented class.

On Wednesday, the Sacramento Kings, who will be choosing eighth overall, became one of the first franchises to announce its interest in dealing the lottery pick in order to acquire a more seasoned player, and hopefully the Toronto Raptors were listening.

Of course, Toronto isn’t exactly loaded with veterans of any kind, good or bad. But there are a few players who the Raptors could package with the 21st overall pick to entice the Kings into the negotiation process. Kings GM Pete D’Alessandro spoke to Jason Jones of the Sacramento Bee following the draft in New York City, and while he made it clear that the franchise is exploring its options, trading the pick is definitely a possibility.

”We’re looking at everything right now. We think there will be a good player at eight. We’ll also look at opportunities to move up, down, and at veterans [in trades].”

Rumored to also be looking for a solid defender and possibly someone who can shoot the three, Sacramento has been projected to take Aaron Gordon in several mock drafts. But the highly-touted power forward may already have a job by the time that the Kings are called to the podium.

For the record, Toronto already owns Sacramento’s second-round pick after a trade in 2012 involving James Johnson, and the city is well aware of the success that the franchise has had in past dealings with the Kings.

If it’s a quality defender that Sacramento is after, then Raptors’ swingman Terrence Ross could be the answer. During the regular season, Ross was a steady, one-on-one defender when paired against an opponent’s second or third-leading scorer. And while he disappeared offensively down the stretch and in the playoffs with Toronto, the Kings wouldn’t need Ross to score with the likes of DeMarcus Cousins, Rudy Gay, and Isaiah Thomas already on their roster.

As far as quality, outside shooters are concerned, the Raptors have only Steve Novak to offer. But a quick look at the numbers indicate that they could easily do without the former, 3-point assassin. Throughout the season, Novak was a constant on Toronto’s bench, averaging just 10 minutes a game with a whopping 3.3 PPG. And since the arrival of John Salmons, he has essentially become a full-time practice player.

While it isn’t likely to be their best offer, packaging Ross and Novak with one of Toronto’s late-round selections if necessary could be enough to convince the Kings to send the eighth overall pick north of the border. And even if the Raptors are forced to part with their own first-round pick, the opportunity to add a top-10 talent from this year’s draft is too valuable to ignore.

Ty is an NBA writer for RantSports.com. Follow him on Twitter @abovethefoldTy.

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  • Brian Gerstein

    Correction on the Raptors pick, which is #20, not 21. They lost another coin flip, this time to Chicago, who got the #19 pick.

  • Ryan Klimek

    Why trade Ross for another rookie project unless it’s for a top 5 pick? At 8 you’re looking at Gordon who can easily be caught in “Derrick Williams SF/PF nomansland”. You also say Novak is the only shooter to offer, yet Ross nearly trippled his 3pt FGA from his rookie season to last year, and still improved his percentage to 39.5%. He noticeably developed his game that was more of a slasher/high flyer his rookie season so why take on a project like Aaron Gordon where there is a ton of risk? Plus give up the pick???
    If you can trade into the top 5 then it makes sense. But with this class being so deep, it makes no sense to give up a nice piece of the puzzle from last year, only to regress and replace him with a new project. Why not just sit at 20, see if you can get Payne, Warren, maybe Ennis (although I’m not fond of his game) and go from there. Ross made huge strides last year I think it would be an absolute waste to send him off unless its for a top 5 pick.