The Kings have several players who could be listed as small forwards on their roster.
And for several seasons the Kings have tried to fill the position, only to go into another offseason with questions about who will play small forward.
At this point, the Kings don't need a star at the position. Consistency is the key. And the Kings might get lucky and end up with their small forward of the future via tonight's NBA draft.
"It's possible," Kings basketball president Geoff Petrie said. "I think we still don't have a long-term solution there."
The Kings ended the season with Tyreke Evans playing small forward after two-plus seasons at point guard.
That change had a lot to do with John Salmons having one of his worst seasons in 2011-12 after being reacquired to provide stability at small forward.
Having gone through a litany of small forwards since the days of Ron Artest, the Kings have a chance to invest in a player who could end the small forward carousel.
One of the top two prospects North Carolina's Harrison Barnes and Kentucky's Michael Kidd-Gilchrist might be available when the Kings select fifth in the first round.
The Kings also could trade down to acquire a player like Moe Harkless of St. John's later in the first round.
Though Evans' statistics were best at small forward last season, the franchise believes he is a guard long term.
The rest of the roster of small forwards doesn't include a standout: Salmons, Francisco Garcia, Travis Outlaw and Tyler Honeycutt, who played sparingly as a rookie.
But in the days leading up to the draft, it's never easy to gauge what will happen. The only near-certainty is Kentucky's Anthony Davis will be the first pick by the New Orleans Hornets.
The Kings could opt to address a need for depth at power forward and try to add a small forward in the second round.
"You can get something good late," said Ryan Blake, senior director of NBA scouting operations.
Blake noted players such as Michigan State's Draymond Green, Tennessee Tech's Kevin Murphy, Boston College's Rakim Sanders and Kentucky's Darius Miller among those who could help the Kings.
They are players who might not be superstars but could provide consistency and effort that is "infectious," Blake said.
On a team filled with players whose games are often dictated by how many shots they take, the Kings want players who can impact a game without having to shoot a lot.
The dilemma for the Kings is that even if Barnes or Kidd-Gilchrist is available, do they take either or trade down for a power forward, or even draft a point guard such as Weber State's Damian Lillard?
Whoever the Kings select, they hope he's a key part of what could be a bright future should the team's young players learn how to win together.
"We're still very much a team that's trying to build a young core of players and start to improve and win," Petrie said. "Whatever we do in the draft, we've got to continue to develop our young players."
If the Kings pick one of the top small forwards, Kidd-Gilchrist might be the best "jell" player available.
"Here's a guy that's 6-7, he's out on the wing, physical, great motor," Blake said. "He rebounds the ball well, and he passes the ball well.
"He's going to come in defensively, and he wants to do it on that end."
Blake said drafting Barnes would fill the Kings' need for improved shooting, adding he can play off the ball and "knows how to win."
"He's 6-8 and can shoot over people, but what he really does well is he defends," Blake said. "None of these first-round picks is going to be a first option, and you have to earn those minutes defensively."
If a rookie can do that consistently, he might be the Kings' next starting small forward.
SMALL FORWARDS, BIG TALENTS
Draft prospects the Kings may like today at No. 5:
Harrison Barnes, sophomore, North Carolina: A perimeter scorer with smarts and a willingness to defend.
Michael Kidd-Gilchrist, freshman, Kentucky: Do-it-all player. Defends, rebounds, tenacious and can impact a game without scoring.
Moe Harkless, freshman, St. John's: Adds athleticism and defense while looking to improve on offense.
Quincy Miller, freshman, Baylor: At 6-foot-10, he would add size few could match on the wing.
THEY'RE NO ARTEST
Some of the small forwards the Kings have used since trading Ron Artest:
Tyreke Evans: Won Rookie of the Year award as point guard; better off in the backcourt.
John Salmons: Return to Sacramento last season resulted in one of worst seasons of his career.
Donté Greene: A part of the Artest trade, never panned out in four seasons.
Omri Casspi: After hot start to rookie season in 2009-10, he was traded before last season.
Andres Nocioni: A veteran who was never comfortable on losing team; eventually traded.
Desmond Mason: Veteran brought in for stability, waived early into 2009-10 season.
Ime Udoka: Another veteran stopgap from the 2009-10 season.
Francisco Garcia: At times has been the Kings' best SF, but injuries have been a problem.
Travis Outlaw: Claimed off waivers before last season, had a subpar campaign.