Thomas Robinson: Drafting T-Rob Leaves Sacramento Kings One Year Away

Josh Schoch@JoshSchochAnalyst IIIJune 30, 2012

NEWARK, NJ - JUNE 28:  Thomas Robinson (R) of the Kansas Jayhawks greets NBA Commissioner David Stern (L) after he was selected number five overall by the Sacramento Kings during the first round of the 2012 NBA Draft at Prudential Center on June 28, 2012 in Newark, New Jersey. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and/or using this Photograph, user is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement.  (Photo by Elsa/Getty Images)
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Thomas Robinson slipped from a potential No. 2 pick in the NBA to the Sacramento Kings at No. 5. The addition of Robinson greatly helps the Kings, who are now just one year away from competing in the Western Conference.

After finishing one game ahead of the New Orleans Hornets, the Kings were the second-worst team in the West this year. However, such a great pick gives the team new life, and they have the potential to make the 2014 NBA Playoffs.

Robinson is an NBA-ready player with a great frame. At 6'10" and 240 pounds, he can bang inside with professional power forwards and will be highly successful.

During his final season with the Kansas Jayhawks, T-Rob averaged 17.9 points and 11.8 rebounds per game. He was a National Player of the Year finalist and showed tremendous potential.

This kid is a leader both on and off the court. Thanks to his inspirational story and scrupulous morals, he has no problems off the court. He is a role model and a leader, which is what the Kings needed.

Robinson is going to be a good power forward next season for the Kings, helping a team that is so close to having the talent necessary to make it to the playoffs.

The Kings have struggled in recent years, but thanks to their ability to take good players in the first round, they find themselves quite close to making the postseason.

In 2008 the team had the No. 12 pick and took PF Jason Thompson, who is a solid option and will work alongside Robinson.

ST LOUIS, MO - MARCH 25:  Thomas Robinson #0 of the Kansas Jayhawks looks on against the North Carolina Tar Heels during the 2012 NCAA Men's Basketball Midwest Regional Final at Edward Jones Dome on March 25, 2012 in St Louis, Missouri. Kansas won 80-67.
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In 2009 the team had the No. 4 pick and took SF Tyreke Evans, who is a budding star and averaged 16.5 points, 4.5 assists and 4.6 rebounds per game last season.

In 2010 the team had the No. 5 pick and took C DeMarcus Cousins, who is a great player and averaged 18.1 points and 11.0 rebounds per game last season.

Last year the team had the No. 10 pick and took PG Jimmer Fredette, who struggled last season due to a lack of playing time, but has a lot of potential in the future.

These four, along with current shooting guard Marcus Thornton, have the makings of a great team. However, with Fredette still developing, the team needs a better option at point guard.

While Sacramento fans will have to suffer one more disappointing year, as long as the team either drafts a good point guard next year or see Fredette play to his potential, they will be in good shape to make the playoffs in 2014.

Robinson is a future star, and all indications point to him enjoying a long, successful career. By putting him on a team with budding stars like Cousins and Evans, the Kings have acquired a young, talented frontcourt that they can work around for years to come.

All that's missing from this team is a floor general and a ball distributor.

The Kings need to make it a top priority to get someone who can fill that gap on the roster. The team might not have many options like that next season, but by trading picks for a young point guard like, say, Kendall Marshall or someone of that mold, the team would be complete.

While the Phoenix Suns probably won't be willing to part with Marshall, the point still stands that the Kings need a point guard like him running the offense. If they can find a suitable player with great passing skills, the ability to score if necessary and who can manage a game, they will find that their season doesn't have to end in April.

I give the Kings one year to find that guy. Once they do, they will be fighting for that eighth spot in the playoffs and I'd be surprised if they didn't take it.