2:45pm: The Kings have released an official announcement confirming that they have picked up McLemore’s 2016/17 option.
2:30pm: The Kings have exercised their $4,008,882 team option on Ben McLemore‘s rookie scale deal for 2016/17, Marc J. Spears of Yahoo Sports reports (via Twitter). This will keep the 2013 No. 7 overall pick under contract through next season, which is the final one on his rookie scale pact. The team has yet to make an official announcement, but it appears that Sacramento has made the decision in advance of the November 2nd deadline. The addition of McLemore’s option will give Sacramento more than $61MM in guaranteed salary for 2016/17, which is approximately $28MM below the projected $89MM cap.
It’s not a surprise that the Kings would elect to retain the 22-year-old, who showed marked improvement during the 2014/15 season, his second in the NBA. With the trade of 2014 first-rounder Nik Stauskas to the Sixers this offfseason, and now having his option picked up, it’s apparent that the franchise views him as its shooting guard of the present, and likely the future.
McLemore made 82 appearances during the 2014/15 season for the Kings, all as a starter, averaging 12.1 points, 2.9 rebounds, and 1.4 assists. His career numbers through two NBA campaigns are 10.5 PPG, 2.9 RPG, and 1.4 APG to go along with a slash line of .409/.342/.809.