Sacramento Kings trying to find De’Aaron Fox a high-end running mate

With apparent pressure from ownership, the Sacramento Kings front office is eyeing a couple big names to pair with De’Aaron Fox.

The Sacramento Kings have not made the playoffs since 2006, and they haven’t won more than 45 percent of their games since the 2007-08 campaign. General manager Monte McNair is the latest to take on the task of constructing a roster that’ll end those streaks, and he’s apparently eyeing a big move.

According to Jason Anderson of the Sacramento Bee, the Kings have shown interest in Ben Simmons and Pascal Siakam. With teams gathering this week in Las Vegas for Summer League, talks could heat up. According to Anderson, the perception from outside the organization is the Kings’ new front office is already “feeling the heat” from owner Vivek Ranadive.

The 76ers want a king’s ransom for Simmons (pun intended), and Sacramento may have to get in line behind Golden State and the Clippers in the line of suitors for Siakam should the Raptors seriously entertain moving him. Surgery on his left shoulder in June makes it likely Siakam misses the start of the coming season.

The Kings clearly want and need to give De’Aaron Fox a viable running mate

In De’Aaron Fox’s four seasons, the Kings have a 128-180 record (.415 winning percentage). He’s coming off a season where he averaged a career-best 25.2 points per game, as well as 7.2 assists and 1.5 steals per game. He has work to do as a 3-point shooter (32.2 percent last season), but he has apparently put on some weight in muscle this offseason.

Fox’s five-year, $163 million contract extension begins with the 2021-22 season. So he’s contractually committed to the Kings for awhile, as much as that will be worth if the team continues to lose and unhappiness may enter the mix. At this point he has spoken about being committed to Sacramento, as if he’d say anything else.

The idea of Fox being included in a deal for Simmons is something the 76ers would love, but was quickly squashed on the Kings’ end. McNair knows he has to take his shot at finding someone to pair with his young star, and to his credit (ownership pressure aside) he’s not aiming low. Simmons and Siakam are the apparent top targets, but the easy assumption is they are not the only targets or the only options.

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