Sacramento Kings Have A ‘Great Chance’ To Make The Play-In, Says ESPN Projection

Sep 30, 2022, 11:04 AM | Updated: 11:07 am
Aaron Fox #5 of the Sacramento Kings dribbles against the Toronto Raptors during the first half of ...
TORONTO, ON - DECEMBER 13: De"u2019Aaron Fox #5 of the Sacramento Kings dribbles against the Toronto Raptors during the first half of their basketball game at the Scotiabank Arena on December 13, 2021 in Toronto, Ontario, Canada. 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 Mark Blinch/Getty Images)
(Photo by Mark Blinch/Getty Images)

The Sacramento Kings are gaining support from analysts and players from around the NBA.

Earlier in the summer, ESPN’s Marc Spears predicted the Kings will make the playoffs. During the Clippers media day, Paul George said the Kings could be a team ‘that could give you fits’ in the Western Conference.

The latest vote of confidence comes from ESPN Senior Writer Kevin Pelton, who writes the Sacramento Kings have a “great chance” at making the NBA’s play-in tournament.

Pelton uses a combination of SCHOENE player projections and a luck-adjusted Regularized Adjusted Four Factors to predict the team gets at least 36 wins, enough for a chance at the play-in tournament. This combination takes into account average health luck.

As I explained on the Lowe Post last week, the Kings have a great chance at reaching the play-in tournament despite being projected 11th. It’s unlikely one of the teams behind them will jump Sacramento, while the Lakers or Blazers could easily fall out of the top 10. That wouldn’t qualify as ending the Kings’ 16-season playoff drought, but it would give them a shot to win their way into the first round.

The team currently holds the record for the longest NBA playoff appearance drought, which currently sits at 16 seasons. The last time the Kings made the playoffs was during the 2005-06 season, where they were eliminated in the first round by the San Antonio Spurs.

However, since Coach Mike Brown joined the team, there is plenty to be optimistic about. The Kings used their number four pick in the 2022 draft on forward Keegan Murray, signed free agent Malik Monk and traded for Kevin Huerter. These moves are expected to help the team with shooting and defense. Murry has already shown he can be an immediate impact after being named the NBA Summer League MVP.

Pelton’s predictions say the Phoenix Suns, Denver Nuggets and New Orleans Pelicans will finish as the top three teams in the Western Conference. The Golden State Warriors, the NBA defending champs, are predicted to finish 8th.


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