Offseason Outlook: Sacramento Kings

June 17 2013 at 5:59pm CST By Luke Adams

Guaranteed Contracts

Options

  • None

Non-Guaranteed Contracts

  • None

Free Agents / Cap Holds

Draft Picks

  • 1st Round (7th overall)
  • 2nd Round (36th overall)

Cap Outlook

  • Guaranteed Salary: $42,073,855
  • Options: $0
  • Non-Guaranteed Salary: $0
  • Cap Holds: $30,987,730
  • Total: $73,061,585

It was a memorable season for the Kings, but not for what they did on the basketball court.  In fact, their 2012/13 was pretty unremarkable, ending in a 28-54 record and their seventh straight playoff-less season.  Instead, their major battles were fought in front of pulpits and inside of courtrooms.  At one point, it seemed like a mortal lock that the Kings would move further up the west coast and become the "new" Seattle SuperSonics, but ultimately, mayor Kevin Johnson and the city of Sacramento came out on top.

They'll be staying put, but with a new cast of characters.  The Maloofs – who aren't the most beloved people in Sac-Town, have sold their controlling interest to Vivek Ranadive.  Keith Smart was removed as head coach after compiling a 48-93 mark across two seasons and replaced by former Warriors assistant Mike Malone.  President Geoff Petrie was let go and Pete D'Alessandro was appointed as the club's new GM, though he was brought in after Malone's appointment.

Now that we have that out of the way, let's talk some basketball.  We know that this year's free agent class boasts not just one, but two elite talents in Chris Paul and Dwight Howard.  While a number of teams have been linked to one or both megastars, the Kings aren't one of them.  Malone mentioned Paul in his introductory press conference (and got the team fined for it, whoops), but the Kings are a long way from contending and they won't get consideration from him or D12.

So, the Kings can take a page out of the Mavericks' playbook from last season and spread the wealth on a handful of free agents on short-term contracts.  They currently have about $41.4MM committed to nine players for next season and can loosen the belt even further by clearing John Salmons' $7.58MM salary off of the books with the amnesty clause.  Sacramento may not be the most appealing free agent destination, but money talks and the mid-tier types rarely get picky over what city they'll play in.

Alternatively, they can sell off some of their more attractive pieces and make an attempt to start from scratch.  Depending on what week it is, the Kings may or may not be willing to part ways with troubled big man DeMarcus Cousins.  D'Alessandro may prefer to keep the talented Kentucky product and Malone is excited to work with him, but make no mistake about it: the phone lines will be open and the right package can pry him loose.  We know that the Bobcats are one of the many teams with serious interest in Boogie and with pressure to get something going in the near future, their No. 4 pick could certainly be involved in a deal.

As it stands, the Kings hold their own No. 7 pick in next week's draft and no one seems to have the inside track on what they're planning to do.  Part of that has to do with the general chaos of the entire draft board (heck, we don't even know what the Cavs are thinking at No. 1) but it speaks more to the lack of clarity we have on what the rest of the roster will look like.  However, several draft gurus (most notably, ESPN.com's Chad Ford and Jonathan Givony of DraftExpress) have them pegged to take Michigan's Trey Burke.  He may be undersized, but Burke would give Sacramento a true one guard who has shown the ability to perform under pressure.

We saw the winds of change completely overhaul the Kings' franchise off the court, it'll now be interesting to see where the summer takes their on-court product.

Cap footnotes:

  1. Because he met certain criteria during the 2012/13 season, Thomas' previously nonguaranteed contract is now fully guaranteed.
  2. The Kings bought out Brooks in March, and this portion of his salary remains on their books for 2013/14.
  3. The Kings' three restricted free agents will be eligible for qualifying offers of $6,927,157 (Evans), $3,950,869 (Johnson), and $3,101,820 (Douglas), respectively.

Storytellers Contracts and Sham Sports were used in the creation of this post.

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