Tony Snell appears to have made an impression on the Sacramento Kings. With the NBA Draft now a week away, the 21-year-old wing returned to the capital city yesterday for another pre-draft workout before Kings decision-makers.
“I was a little surprised, but I was happy at the same time,” Snell said of his second audition with Sacramento. “That means I did something good in the first workout so I tried to prove myself again today.”
According to the former New Mexico wing, there wasn’t much different between this Kings workout versus his first. However, his demeanor on Thursday was night and day compared to his appearance in Sacramento 11 days ago. Snell appeared more confident and relaxed in his session with the media this time around.
Following yesterday’s workout, new Kings coach Michael Malone took some time to speak one-on-one with Snell. Malone said afterwards he made a point to assure Snell of the Kings’ interest.
“I just told him when you have guys back here for a second time, we’re not bringing guys back in that we don’t like,” Malone said yesterday. ”So Tony had a very good career at New Mexico and he’s played very well for us in the two times he’s been here.”
Snell also got a chance to showcase his talents before the Kings’ new general manager. Pete D’Alessandro was not yet hired when the Kings brought the veteran small forward in for a workout two weeks ago.
“All the guys that he didn’t see prior to him being here, the guys that kind of struck a chord with us that were really appealing to us, he wants to get a look (at) as well (and) bring them back in,” Malone said of D’Alessandro. ”And this is Tony’s second workout, he did great a job again today. Obviously, he’s got a very bright future ahead of himself.”
ESPN.com’s Chad Ford has reported that the Kings could shake up the draft and are very high on Snell and Michigan’s Tim Hardaway Jr., another player they worked out yesterday. However, both young men are currently far from being considered in the No. 7 range. Most mock drafts have Snell and Hardaway Jr. projected as late first-rounders or early second-round draft picks.
“Definitely brings my confidence way up because they have a really high pick,” Snell said of what the repeat workout with Sacramento means to him before the 2013 draft. ”So I’m really happy.”
Sacramento is the only team that Snell has auditioned for twice. The forward prospect out of New Mexico appears to be wrapping up his workout circuit with tryouts before the Indiana Pacers, Los Angeles Clippers and San Antonio Spurs.
Standing at 6’7 and weighing 198 lbs., Snell would likely address the Kings’ need at the small forward position. Snell has the length and lateral quickness to hang defensively on the wing and his shooting stroke is one of the best in this year’s draft. Snell shot 39 percent from beyond the arc in his final season with the Lobos.