The Sacramento Kings and Indiana Pacers could look to leverage some of their 2023 NBA draft assets into ready-made talent, according to Yahoo Sports' Jake Fischer.
Fischer reported the Pacers "already explored trading for veteran talent before the February trade deadline." He added the Kings are "another team to monitor, sources said, for first-round trade possibilities."
Indiana in particular is in a strong position when it comes to potential deal. The team stayed at No. 7 in the lottery and has the Nos. 26 and 29 picks. Packaging the seventh overall selection along with one of those late first-rounders could net a solid return.
The Pacers could also keep that top-10 pick if they don't want to accelerate their ongoing rebuild too quickly. Bleacher Report's Jonathan Wasserman had them taking UCF power forward Taylor Hendricks in his post-lottery mock draft:
"Hendricks has given off high-floor, high-ceiling vibes with convincing shooting and defensive versatility, plus room/time to build on the flashes of pull-ups and drives past closeouts. Indiana should picture a cornerstone three-and-D forward who'll be valuable, regardless of how much his off-the-dribble game develops."
How Indiana handles the draft will be a great barometer for where the front office views the current roster.
Sacramento has a more pressing need to at least explore all of its trade avenues on the heels of finishing third in the Western Conference and pushing the reigning champion Golden State Warriors to seven games in the first round of the playoffs.
Bleacher Report's Zach Buckley listed three targets for the Kings this offseason: the Dallas Mavericks' Reggie Bullock, the Toronto Raptors' O.G. Anunoby and the Brooklyn Nets' Mikal Bridges.
Acquiring any of those three will almost certainly mean parting with the No. 24 overall pick in 2023 along with other pieces. For general manager Monte McNair, that's worth it to add the kind of wing who might help Sacramento get to another level.