2011 NBA Mock Draft: Sacramento Kings Opt for Jonas Valanciunas at No. 5
The Sacramento Kings Need a Home and a Big Man, Which is Where Jonas Valanciunas Comes In Via the 2011 NBA Draft
Not surprisingly, DeMarcus Cousins had his share of outbursts during his rookie season. He also showed he can in fact be a decent post scorer.
Decent, but not great.
Adding another big man in the NBA Draft would be a nice move for a franchise in need of a home and an economic bailout.
Sacramento could take a point guard at No. 5 to compliment Tyreke Evans, but Valanciunas has more upside than any floor general on the board.
At 6-11, Valanciunas is only 18 years old and is already listed at 240 pounds.
Although he probably won't come overseas immediately, he is not as raw as the other international players likely to be lottery picks.
The Lithuanian has held his own in international play, including against top big man Enes Kanter.
Pro Projection: Solid NBA Starter
Think Darko Milicic, only with a hint of competitive drive and assertiveness.
Valanciunas has sprouted four inches since turning 16 and has a decent amount of physical presence already.
Just imagine what two more years and 20 more pounds would do for his NBA game.
Pick Grade: B+
Sure, you never know what you're getting when you tap the young, international talent base. Omri Casspi's inconsistent play might tempt the Kings to avoid going overseas and settle for a decent American player.
At this point, not even five Jimmer Fredette's could save the Kings from the financial doldrums.
The Maloofs finally make a gamble that pays off.
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