Three Sacramento Kings Summer League players to watch in Las Vegas

Jul 7, 2023, 9:37 AM | Updated: 9:41 am

SAN FRANCISCO, CALIFORNIA - JULY 05: Neemias Queta #88 of the Sacramento Kings shoots a foul shot a...

(Photo by Thearon W. Henderson/Getty Images)

(Photo by Thearon W. Henderson/Getty Images)

Following a successful showing at the California Classic, the Sacramento Kings have arrived in Las Vegas, Nevada for the NBA 2K24 Summer League.

Sacramento’s two wins at Golden 1 Center came on the back of Keegan Murray, who dominated opposing defenses to average 35.0 points and 2.0 blocks per game while shooting 51 percent from the field and 45 percent from three-point land.

While Murray’s performance was encouraging regarding his development as a player, the rest of the Kings’ roster took a step back as Sacramento’s reigning All-Rookie First-Team forward exploded for 29 and 41 points, respectively.

After putting on a show for Sacramento fans at Golden 1 Center, Murray will not play in Las Vegas, clearing the way for other players to step up and contribute as the Kings aim for a Summer League title.

Here are some players to watch for as Sacramento opens up play on Friday night:

YouTube video

Colby Jones

Sacramento’s top pick from the 2023 NBA Draft is in line for a bump in opportunity with Murray sitting out in Las Vegas.

Jones was solid during the California Classic, averaging 11.5 points, 4.5 rebounds, and 2.5 steals per game on 53 percent shooting from the field and 37 percent from three-point range.

The Xavier product showcased his ability to score in transition and act as a disruptor on the defensive end during 22.9 minutes per game, and now the guard will get a chance to have a little more runway on his offensive endeavors.

It will be interesting to see if Jones will take more initiative on the offensive end now that Murray and his 18.5 field goal attempts per game are out of the equation.

Jones was a strong scorer at the college level, averaging 15.0 points on 11.3 field goal attempts per game while also handing out 4.4 assists per contest.

Will Murray’s absence open up the floor for Jones to create more scoring opportunities for himself and his teammates? We’ll see.

Jalen Slawson

Slawson never looked comfortable during his two appearances in the California Classic.

The 54th pick from last month’s NBA Draft only scored one point while playing 16.3 minutes per game during Sacramento’s two wins.

While Slawson got a decent amount of playing time, he wasn’t too aggressive on the offensive end, taking just five field goal attempts (three from beyond the arc), although he did manage to make an impact on the glass (4.5 rebounds per game).

During his college days with Furman, Slawson was an efficient scorer (15.6 points, 55% FG, 40% 3PT) and defender (1.5 steals and 1.5 blocks per game).

With Murray’s 31 minutes per game out of the lineup, Slawson will likely be in line for an increased role in Las Vegas. Let’s see if the incoming rookie can knock the rust off and make an impact with an expanded role.

YouTube video

Neemias Queta

While the main storylines of the Sacramento Kings’ offseason thus far have been Domantas Sabonis’ extension, the signing of Sasha Vezenkov, and more, a topic that could generate more noise over the coming weeks is the future of center Neemias Queta.

Queta, a defensive big man that was named to the NBA G-League’s All-Defensive Team while finishing second in the G-League Most Valuable Player voting, is a restricted free agent as he prepares for his third Las Vegas Summer League.

The seven-footer has spent that past two seasons splitting time with Stockton and Sacramento on a two-way contract, but Queta and the Kings are currently at a crossroads in determining the big man’s future with the organization.

As play tips off in Las Vegas on Friday, Queta will unofficially begin a tryout of sorts–a tryout for a full roster spot with Sacramento, or for a chance with one of the other 29 NBA teams.

The Kings need a player that possesses Queta’s abilities as a rebounder, post scorer, and shot-blocker, something that the 23-year-old excelled at in the G-League. Sacramento didn’t give Queta a very long leash at the NBA level, as the Utah State product has only logged 149 minutes over two seasons (20 games) with the Kings.

Sacramento signed Alex Len to a one-year deal this summer while also retaining small-ball five Trey Lyles to play behind All-Star center Domantas Sabonis, but neither provide the type of defensive upside that Queta possesses.

Will the Kings give Queta a chance to prove his talents on a full NBA contract? His performance during Las Vegas Summer League could weigh heavy on that outcome.

Sacramento Kings NBA 2K24 Las Vegas Summer League Schedule

  • Friday, July 7th – Sacramento Kings vs. Atlanta Hawks – 7:30 PM PST – NBA TV
  • Monday, July 10th – Sacramento Kings vs. Los Angeles Clippers – 7:30 PM PST – NBA TV
  • Tuesday, July 11th – Sacramento Kings vs. Chicago Bulls – 7:00 PM PST – ESPN 2
  • Thursday, July 13th – Sacramento Kings vs. Minnesota Timberwolves – 6:30 PM PST – NBA TV
  • Final game TBD based on performance in first four games

Sacramento Kings Offseason Schedule

  • Thursday, July 6 – Free Agents can begin signing deals
  • Friday, July 7 –Monday, July 17– NBA Summer League in Las Vegas
  • August TBD – 2023-24 NBA regular season schedule release
  • September TBD – Sacramento Kings training camp begins
  • October TBD – Sacramento Kings preseason begins
  • October TBD – NBA regular season begins

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