With Thursday's draft fast approaching, here are a few things to keep in mind: These drafts have become increasingly less predictable as the ages of the players declines (smaller body of work to evaluate, leading to more uncertainty about braintrusts); though no longer infatuated with the Lottery process because of six consecutive losing seasons, Kings co-owners Joe and Gavin Maloof nonetheless historically love having high picks, which means they are inherently resistant to moving back in a swap for additional selections; team president Geoff Petrie nonetheless remains the ultimate decision-maker here, and is as tight-lipped as ever. If Petrie decides against drafting Harrison Barnes or Michael Kidd-Gilchrist - or whichever of the projected Nos.2-5 picks drops to the Kings at No. 5 - and moves back (possibly for the intriguing Moe Harkless or a frontcourt player with length like a John Henson, Tyler Zeller, etc.), the Maloofs once again are expected to defer.
Suffice to say, the Kings' greatest needs remain frontcourt length and a defender to help DeMarcus Cousins, shooting, and point guard. (Everyone loves Isaiah Thomas, but he's too small to be a fulltime starter.