Ben McLemore Will Be a Good Fit with the Sacramento Kings
These words by David Stern, spoken above numerous boo birds in the Barclays Center, had the same effect of a sledgehammer annihilating a piece of fine china to Sacramento Kings faithful who hoped Noel would fall one more pick to No. 7.
But those same fans had a fantastic consolation prize waiting for them in Kansas' Ben McLemore to help get their heart rate down. It's like a true roller coaster ride; we felt the lowest of the low and back to a pretty nice emotional high in the span of a few minutes.
McLemore's arrival truly signals the new ownership era for the Kings. This draft, along with the selection of Ray McCallum out of Detroit, was miles ahead of the 2012 debacle that was the Thomas Robinson selection and the great-way-to-sell-tickets pick of Jimmer Fredette in 2011.
It could also mean the departure of one Tyreke Evans. If Sacramento decides to trade the one-time Rookie of the Year, as Dallas is reportedly interested, it should try extremely hard to get an extra first-round pick in 2014's absolutely loaded draft class. That, or attempt to throw its hat into the scrum to get Andrew Wiggins, Jabari Parker or Marcus Smart.
So how will Sacramento's starting lineup look next season? McLemore will most likely play as the shooting guard, Isaiah Thomas will be back at the point, DeMarcus Cousins will grace everyone with his presence once again at the center position, Patrick Patterson or Jason Thompson at the 4 and John Salmons playing on the wing.
Since Salmons is the only small forward on the roster and James Johnson is a restricted free agent, McLemore could slide over in extreme situations and be an undersized 3 while Marcus Thornton joins the starting lineup at shooting guard if no other SF joins the roster. Sacramento will probably end up signing a small forward free agent. Kyle Korver? Corey Brewer? Andre Iguodala? (Probably not, but it's fun to dream.)
McLemore is by far a better shooting guard, considering some have compared him to a young Ray Allen because of his sweet shooting stroke.
And since McLemore's specialty is Ray Allen-like jumpers, Kings fans won't have to suffer many more fadeaway 17-foot jump shots like Evans does. Sometimes those are the result of busted plays, but Evans has a tendency to settle, and he's not the greatest shooter in the first place. With McLemore, we won't mind it.
And just imagine Thomas penetrating the lane and then kicking it out to McLemore, who is camped out beyond the three-point line. Kings fans hope he'll hit those shots with much more consistency than Fredette ever did in California's capital. Hopefully opponents will fear that wrist snap like they do a lunging snake.
Of course, there is still a long time to go until the season starts and that means the roster will be playing a game of musical chairs until then.
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