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Reports: Kings want to trade up in NBA Draft; could Suns be involved?

Kentucky guard De'Aaron Fox moves down court against UCLA in the second half of an NCAA college basketball tournament South Regional semifinal game Friday, March 24, 2017, in Memphis, Tenn. (AP Photo/Brandon Dill)

Among the early NBA Draft scuttlebutt that arose Wednesday was the Sacramento Kings’ interest in packaging the Nos. 5 and 10 selections to move into the third spot, where the Sixers currently hold the pick.

The week-old rumor had seemingly already been passed around and debunked, as Philly.com’s Keith Pompey reports, but that it arose once again inevitably led to Sacramento’s next-best option coming up.

Jordan Schultz of the Huffington Post and Bleacher Report said sources told him the Kings have shown interest in using the same package of two lottery picks to make a trade with the Suns and move into the fourth slot in the draft.

Schultz adds that the Kings are also seeking Phoenix’s 32nd or 54th pick in exchange for the No. 4 overall selection.

Sacramento has been long attached to Kentucky point guard De’Aaron Fox, and with the team’s recent history — i.e., the DeMarcus Cousins trade that netted it guard Buddy Hield at the All-Star break — it’s believable the franchise would make a lopsided deal to grab a player its leadership group is in love with.

If Sacramento’s interest in Fox is that real, the following five things would need to occur for such a trade with Phoenix to come to fruition.

— The Sixers would have to decline a similar offer by the Kings. Sources told Schultz that a trade with Philly is the more favorable move from the Kings’ perspective (obviously).

— If the above passes the test, the Sixers would then have to not select Fox at No. 3.

— The Suns have a player on the board available to them rated higher than Fox (like Lonzo Ball or Josh Jackson).

— Then, Sacramento would need to believe the Suns really want to take Fox at No. 4.

The mock drafts are helping the Suns out in regards to the last issue. ESPN’s Chad Ford and DraftExpress.com have Fox going fourth overall to Phoenix.

From the Suns’ perspective, we addressed a potential trading down scenario involving the Kings earlier this week in a look at four potential draft-day deals.

If (the Kings) indeed want Fox and the Suns would rather have two lottery selections, then it would make sense for Phoenix to flip a Fox selection for, say, Jayson Tatum or Jonathan Isaac at No. 5, and then take either Frank Ntilikina or Zach Collins at No. 10.

Phoenix has gotten looks at Tatum, Collins and Isaac over the past week.

To sum it up, there are too many what-ifs and too many wildcards that could appear on draft day for this trade to become a likely scenario.

The silence from the Suns’ and Sixers’ rumor-mills only makes it that more difficult to judge.

We can, however, take one or two things away from it: Either an agent is trying to build up his client’s stock by tossing out trade rumors around him, and/or Sacramento’s restructured front office — Scott Perry was added as executive VP alongside VP of basketball operations Vlade Divac — is still leaking rumors that will hurt the team in the long run.

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