Sacramento Kings Rumors

Ramon Sessions Signs With Kings

September 22 at 8:48pm CDT By Eddie Scarito

MONDAY, 8:48pm: The Kings have formally announced Sessions’ signing.

SATURDAY, 11:22am: Sessions’ deal is fully guaranteed with no options (team or player), Shams Charania of RealGM reports (Twitter link).

10:55am: Free agent guard Ramon Sessions has signed with the Kings, Adrian Wojnarowski of Yahoo! NBA: Atlanta Hawks at Milwaukee BucksSports reports. The deal is for two years and $4.2MM, and Sacramento used their biannual exception for the acquisition. This brings the Kings’ preseason roster total to 19, and with Sessions’ deal most likely guaranteed for next season, Sacramento now has 12 fully-guaranteed deals, and two players carrying partial guarantees on their contracts. The Bucks had renounced their rights to Sessions last month, but there were rumors that the Rockets were interested in acquiring him via a sign-and-trade arrangement.

He appeared in 28 contests for Milwaukee last season after a February trade with the Bobcats which sent Sessions and Jeff Adrien to the Bucks for Luke Ridnour and Gary Neal. Sessions career numbers are 11.7 PPG, 3.0 RPG, and 4.7 APG. His career slash line is .439/.311/.800.

Sessions will compete with Darren Collison for the starting point guard spot, though Collison is the likely frontrunner. He also can contribute at the shooting guard position, making him a versatile bench piece. Hoops Rumors’  Cray Allred detailed what Sessions brings to a team in his Free Agent Stock Watch piece on the 6’3″, 28 year-old out of Nevada.

Photo courtesy USA Today Sports Images

Clippers Sign Jared Cunningham

September 22 at 7:40pm CDT By Eddie Scarito

MONDAY, 7:40pm: Cunningham’s deal is in fact non-guaranteed, as Eric Pincus of the Los Angeles Times reveals in his updated Basketball Insiders salary page for the Clippers.

SATURDAY, 8:52am: The Clippers have signed Jared Cunningham, according to the RealGM transactions log. No official announcement from the team has been made yet, and details of the contract are not yet known. It is most likely a non-guaranteed training camp deal for the 22-year-old shooting guard out of Oregon State. This signing ups the Clippers’ preseason roster count to 18, with 15 of those deals being fully guaranteed.

Cunningham has appeared in a total of 21 games over two seasons in the league, and his most recent action came with the Kings last season when he parlayed a 10-day contract into a deal that covered the remainder of the 2013/14 season. His career numbers are 2.0 PPG, 0.4 RPG, and 0.4 APG. His career slash line is .343/.300/.833.

Los Angeles already has J.J. Redick, C.J. Wilcox, and Jamal Crawford on the roster at the shooting guard position, which makes it a real longshot for Cunningham to remain on the roster for opening night.

Scotty Hopson In Talks To Play In Italy

September 22 at 11:39am CDT By Chuck Myron

Scotty Hopson is finalizing a deal with Italy’s Enel Brindisi, sources tell Sportando’s Emiliano Carchia. Hopson is still under contract with the Kings, who officially acquired him in the Jason Terry trade last week, but it seems unlikely that Sacramento would carry his non-guaranteed salary of nearly $1.451MM into the season. Italian outlets Mismatchbrindisi and La Gazzetta dello Sport were the first to report the talks, according to Carchia, who provided a translation of the original dispatches.

Hopson was averaging 10.9 points in 24.9 minutes per game for Turkey’s Anadolu Efes last season when Cleveland signed him at the end of March to a deal that covered the rest of the season, with non-guaranteed salary included for 2014/15. The Cavs used their room exception to make the deal more lucrative and thus more valuable for matching salaries in a trade, though they could have created a more valuable trade chip and saved money at the same if they’d signed a 10-plus-year veteran to a minimum-salary deal. Still, Hopson played out the season and Cleveland indeed shipped him out, sending him to Charlotte, which flipped him to New Orleans less than 48 hours later. The Pelicans sent him along to Houston in the Omer Asik trade less than 48 hours after that, and the Rockets held on to him for two months so they could aggregate his salary with Alonzo Gee‘s in the Terry swap.

A deal overseas would presumably give Hopson some degree of certainty about where he’ll play the coming season after a whirlwind summer, though it’s unclear whether it would contain an NBA escape clause. The 25-year-old swingman saw action in only two games for less than seven minutes combined during his stint with the Cavs, so he didn’t have much of a chance to prove his worth in the Association.

Western Notes: Kings, Mavs, Robinson III

September 18 at 8:59pm CDT By Eddie Scarito

The Kings aren’t done tinkering with their roster, Jason Jones of the Sacramento Bee writes. Despite signing Darren Collison GM Pete D’Alessandro would still like to add another ballhandler into the mix. Jones also believes the franchise should be concerned about not having a second round pick in next year’s draft since those selections are growing increasingly valuable, as they allow teams to add young players at lower salaries to their rosters.

Here’s the latest from out west:

  • Alonzo Gee is still expected to be waived by the Kings prior to the start of training camp after he was acquired along with Scotty Hopson in the deal that sent Jason Terry to the Rockets. Sam Amico of Fox Sports Ohio thinks that there is a good chance that Gee ends up in training camp with the Lakers since Coach Byron Scott was a fan of the player during their time together in Cleveland.
  • The Wolves have guaranteed $250K of Glenn Robinson III‘s minimum salary deal, Eric Pincus of Basketball Insiders reports (Twitter link).
  • After the Cavaliers, the team that has done the most to improve themselves this summer is the Mavericks, the staff at Basketball Insiders write in their season preview. They were divided on how Dallas would fare this upcoming season, with the predictions ranging from the team finishing second to ending the season fourth in the Southwest Division.
Read more here: http://www.sacbee.com/2014/09/17/6716192/kings-offseason-moves-will-continue.html#storylink=cpy

And-Ones: Pietrus, Sophomores, Crawford

September 18 at 5:50pm CDT By Zach Links

NBA coaches need to be in charge, they need to have the final say on matters, and they need to have the backing of the front office.  Of course, that’s not always the way it is and, for the most part, NBA teams wind up getting run by their players, writes Doug Smith of the Toronto Star. Smith would be very impressed with a General Manager who would call in a star player and tell him to shape up or ship out, but that rarely happens.  Here’s more from around the Association..

  • The Kings worked out free agent forward Mickael Pietrus this week in Sacramento, league sources tell Shams Charania of RealGM (via Twitter).
  • Word of Jordan Crawford‘s deal in China just leaked out today, but the guard tells his followers on Twitter that the deal was actually agreed upon a month ago.
  • Being a rookie in the NBA can be hard on most players who have to adjust to the talent level the league offers as well as the grueling schedule. Scott Howard-Cooper of NBA.com takes a look at some second-year players who could be facing career-defining seasons.

Eddie Scarito contributed to this post.

Kings Sign Omri Casspi

September 18 at 3:53pm CDT By Cray Allred

SEPTEMBER 18TH: The deal is finally official, the team announced.

JULY 30TH: It’ll be a guaranteed deal, tweets David Pick of Eurobasket.com.

JULY 25TH: The Kings are finalizing a one-year contract at the league minimum with Omri Casspi, tweets Marc Stein of ESPN.com. Casspi somewhat surprisingly cleared waivers earlier today, as the Kings had reportedly planned to put in a claim. It nonetheless appears as though they maintained interest, and the feeling had been mutual for Casspi, who spoke in recent days of his fondness for a return to Sacramento.

Signing the Dan Fegan client for just one year at the minimum, as opposed to claiming his two-year contract off waivers, will save the team enough money to keep it beneath the luxury tax line. The Kings had been at $75,852,705 in team salary, according to the latest estimates from Basketball Insiders, just $976,295 shy of the tax threshold. Casspi will make $1,063,384 as a five-year veteran at the minimum salary, but Sacramento will only be on the hook for the portion equivalent to the two-year veteran’s minimum of $915,243, since it’s a one-year contract. The league will pick up the tab for the rest.

That provision only applies to one-year deals, so if the Kings had claimed Casspi’s two-year contract off waivers, they would have had to pay his full salary, pushing them into tax territory and likely prompting the team to waive or trade Quincy Acy. Sacramento and Acy this week agreed to push back the date upon which his salary would become fully guaranteed so the club could explore its options.

Casspi’s camp is quite pleased with the agreement that will bring him back to the team with which he spent his first two NBA seasons, tweets David Pick of Eurobasket.com. The native of Israel averaged 9.5 points in 24.5 minutes per game with 37.1% shooting as a King, but those numbers dropped precipitously when a trade sent him to Cleveland. He rebounded this past season with the Rockets, but the Pelicans nonetheless saw fit to let him go soon after they acquired him as part of the Omer Asik trade.

Chuck Myron contributed to this post.

Ryan Hollins Signs With Kings

September 18 at 3:28pm CDT By Eddie Scarito

THURSDAY, 3:28pm: The deal is official, the team announced.

WEDNESDAY, 7:13pm: Ryan Hollins has agreed to a deal to sign with the Kings, Marc J. Spears of Yahoo! Sports reports (Twitter link). Exact contract details aren’t yet known, but it is a one-year, fully-guaranteed deal according to Spears. The Lakers, Bulls, Heat, and Spurs had also expressed interest in the twenty nine year-old seven-footer out of UCLA. This will bring Sacramento’s preseason roster count to 19.

As for what he brings to Sacramento, Hollins will compete with Reggie Evans and Sim Bhullar for minutes as DeMarcus Cousins‘ backup. He offers the Kings high-percentage shooting, defense, and rim protection, as Chuck Myron of Hoops Rumors points out in his Free Agent Stock Watch article on the veteran center.

Hollins spent last season with the Clippers, where he appeared in 61 contests, averaging 2.3 PPG and 1.5 RPG. His slash line was .736/.000/.625. In eight seasons in the NBA, Hollins’ career numbers are 3.8 PPG and 2.2 RPG.

Pacific Notes: Boozer, Kings, Dragic

September 18 at 10:35am CDT By Zach Links

Mark Medina of the Los Angeles Daily News continued his look at the Lakers‘ depth chart today with a breakdown of offseason acquisition Carlos Boozer. The Lakers have Boozer for a bargain – just $3.25MM – but there are looming questions about his intensity on defense and whether he can handle a possibly fluctuating role. Here’s more out of the Pacific Division..

  • Even after an offseason of tinkering, the Kings probably aren’t done making moves, writes Jason Jones of The Sacramento Bee.  Between Reggie Evans, Jason Thompson, and Carl Landry, the Kings are paying nearly $14MM for players who don’t fit in their long-range plans.  Instead, the Kings would like to find a player who can come in, hold down the power forward position, and allow the team to cut salary.
  • If the Suns give a max contract to anyone, it should be to Goran Dragic, not Eric Bledsoe, opines Bob Young of The Arizona Republic.  In Young’s view, the Suns’ four-year, $48MM offer to Bledsoe is reasonable and that kind of contract would give them enough breathing room to retain Dragic long-term.  If Bledsoe opts to instead sign the qualifying offer, Young wouldn’t mind seeing a future with Dragic as the team leader alongside Isaiah Thomas with Archie Goodwin and draft pick Tyler Ennis in reserve.
  • Guard Zoran Dragic likes his current situation overseas but still pines to play in the NBA, where he is being targeted by the Suns and other clubs.  “I am here preparing the season with Malaga.  But if I have the chance to go the NBA my desire is to go,” said Dragic to La Opinion de Malaga (translation courtesy of Sportando’s Emiliano Carchia). “I think that the best option for me is to go the NBA now because I don’t want to lose one year.  I think I am ready to play in the NBA but the truth is that I don’t know anything about the NBA at the moment.  My heart is with Unicaja.

Western Notes: Rockets, Faried, Terry

September 17 at 8:54pm CDT By Eddie Scarito

The Rockets roster will be quite crowded once the team completes the signings of Francisco Garcia and Kostas Papanikolaou, and the player with a guaranteed deal most likely to be waived or traded to make space is Donatas Motiejunas, Eric Pincus of Basketball Insiders opines (Twitter links).

Here’s more from out west:

  • Nuggets power forward Kenneth Faried‘s stock is certainly on the rise after a strong 2013/14 season and his stellar play with Team USA during the FIBA World Cup. David Nurse of Hoops Hype profiles the “Manimal,” and provides arguments for and against Faried becoming a breakout star in the NBA.
  • As part of the Jason Terry trade, the Kings also receive a trade exception of $5.85MM, Sam Amick of USA Today reports (Twitter link). He’s likely rounding down from Terry’s precise salary of $5,850,313, meaning that the Kings folded the salaries of Alonzo Gee and Scotty Hopson into existing trade exceptions.
  • Former NBA point guard Acie Law is no longer committed to his deal with the Foshan Long Lions of the Chinese Basketball Association, David Pick of Eurobasket reports (Twitter link). Law last saw NBA action during the 2010/11 season, when he appeared in 40 games for the Warriors, and averaged 5.1 PPG and 1.8 APG.

Rockets Acquire Jason Terry

September 17 at 2:47pm CDT By Eddie Scarito

SEPTEMBER 17TH: The deal is official, the teams announced in separate releases. It’s Terry and a pair of second-round picks to the Rockets, and Gee and Hopson to the Kings. The Rockets get Sacramento’s 2015 second-round pick if it falls anywhere from the 31st through 49th selections, according to Houston’s statement, not the 31st through 50th, as the previous report indicated. The Knicks 2016 second-rounder that’s headed to Houston via Sacramento is indeed unprotected.

NBA: Brooklyn Nets at Detroit PistonsSEPTEMBER 8TH: The trade will include Gee and Hopson, but not Powell, Feigen tweets.

AUGUST 31ST: 5:01pm: The picks that the Rockets are receiving come with some unlikely protections, notes Jonathan Feigen of the Houston Chronicle. Houston would get Sacramento’s 2015 second-round pick as long as it falls between the 31st and 50th selections. There is no protection for the Knicks’ 2016 pick, writes Feigen. The deal will take several weeks to complete, notes Feigen, and will include other non-guaranteed contracts, likely either Scotty Hopson, Josh Powell, or both.

4:25pm: The Kings will send Houston two second-round picks in deal, including the 2016 second-rounder that was acquired from the Knicks, Wojnarowski reports (Twitter link).

4:10pm: The Kings are finalizing a deal that would send Jason Terry and a future second-rounder to the Rockets for a package of non-guaranteed contracts, including Alonzo Gee, reports Adrian Wojnarowski of Yahoo! Sports (Twitter links).

Terry had been acquired by the Kings at the trade deadline along with Reggie Evans, in exchange for shooting guard Marcus Thornton. Terry never played a game for the Kings, instead opting to rehab his surgically repaired knee in preparation for the 2014/15 season. Prior to the trade, Terry appeared in 35 games for the Nets, averaging 4.5 PPG and 1.6 APG.

Terry is on an expiring $5.85MM contract for next season, and he figures to see some minutes with the Rockets backing up both guard positions. Terry will likely be more motivated playing for a Houston squad that hopes to secure a high seed heading into next season’s playoffs, than a still-rebuilding team in Sacramento.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.