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  • Associated Press file

    Shooting guard Nik Stauskas from Michigan is the first pick by the Kings in the 2014 NBA Draft.

  • Morry Gash / AP

    Texas' Demarcus Holland, left, and Michigan's Nik Stauskas battle for a loose ball during the first half of a third-round game of the NCAA college basketball tournament Saturday, March 22, 2014, in Milwaukee.

  • Michael Conroy / AP

    Michigan guard Nik Stauskas (11) shoots against Michigan State guard Gary Harris (14) in the second half of an NCAA college basketball game in the championship of the Big Ten Conference tournament on Sunday, March 16, 2014, in Indianapolis. (AP Photo/ Michael Conroy)

  • Kathy Willens / Associated Press

    Nik Stauskas, right, is greeted by NBA Commissioner Adam Silver after being selected eighth overall by the Sacramento Kings during the 2014 NBA draft, Thursday, June 26, 2014, in New York.

  • Associated Press

    Nik Stauskas, right, a multitalented guard from Michigan, was selected by the Kings with the eighth pick in the 2014 NBA Draft.

Kings take Michigan guard Nik Stauskas with No. 8 pick in NBA Draft

Published: Thursday, Jun. 26, 2014 - 8:29 pm
Last Modified: Friday, Jun. 27, 2014 - 1:24 pm

The Kings used the eighth overall pick in the 2014 NBA Draft on Michigan guard Nik Stauskas.

Stauskas (6-foot-6, 205 pounds) is considered one of the best shooters in the draft. He averaged 17.5 points as a sophomore, including 44.2 percent from three-point range.

The Kings made improving their outside shooting a priority this offseason.

“To be honest, I just feel like I bring a skill that not many people have,” Stauskas said. “I bring a skill set that’s needed in the NBA. I really take pride in being the eighth pick in the draft, and I’m not going to let them down.”

It’s the second year in a row the Kings have picked a shooting guard. Ben McLemore was the pick last year.

Stauskas became one of the nation’s most well-rounded offensive players, winning Big Ten Player of the Year honors. Stauskas shot 44 percent from 3-point range in two years in college and improved his ball handling and defense considerably in his second season when he took over a big share of the playmaking role with departure of star point guard Trey Burke to the NBA.

Stauskas is from Mississauga, Ontario, and followed top pick Andrew Wiggins as the second Canadian taken in the draft.

The Kings are coming off their eighth straight losing season but are looking for improvement in the second season under owner Vivek Ranadive, general manager Pete D’Alessandro and coach Mike Malone.

There was little progress in the first year under the new leadership as Sacramento went 28-54 for a second straight season as Malone was not able to turn the Kings into the defensive-minded team as he had hoped.

Sacramento is looking to build around a core led by temperamental power forward DeMarcus Cousins, small forward Rudy Gay and point guard Isaiah Thomas. Cousins signed a four-year, $62 million contract extension before last season, Gay exercised his $19.2 million option earlier this week and Thomas is expected to stay despite being a restricted free agent.

The Kings have struggled in recent years to add to the core as first-round picks Jimmer Fredette (2011) and Thomas Robinson (2012) are no longer on the team and McLemore struggled as a rookie.

Photo gallery: Kings fans come out to watch the draft

The Associated Press contributed to this report.


Follow The Bee’s Jason Jones on Twitter @mr_jasonjones and read more about the team at www.sacbee.com/kings.

Read more articles by Jason Jones



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