Kings guard Terence Davis won’t accept his modest $1.9MM qualifying offer in free agency this offseason, according to Jason Anderson of The Sacramento Bee, who reports that Davis is expected to seek a new contract worth in the neighborhood of $9MM annually.
Davis, who signed with the Raptors as an undrafted free agent in 2019, earned a spot on the All-Rookie Second Team a year ago, then was traded to the Kings at the 2021 trade deadline. He played some of the best basketball of his career down the stretch in Sacramento, averaging 11.1 points, 3.3 rebounds, and 1.7 assists per game on .439/.372/.784 shooting in 27 games (21.5 MPG).
Near the end of the season, Davis spoke about a desire to re-sign with the Kings, and the team will have the ability to match any offer he receives, since he’ll be a restricted free agent.
Anderson likens Davis’ situation to that of Grizzlies guard De’Anthony Melton, who reached restricted free agency in 2020 after two NBA seasons. Melton – whose offensive numbers weren’t as strong as Davis’ but whose reputation as a defender is stronger – signed a four-year contract worth just shy of $35MM, without a full guarantee on the fourth year. Based on Anderson’s report, Davis will be looking to match or top that deal.
Although the Kings don’t hold Davis’ full Bird rights, they’ll have his Early Bird rights, giving them the ability to sign him directly to a new contract or to match any offer sheet he signs with another team.
A rival suitor could put pressure on Sacramento by backloading a three- or four-year offer via the Gilbert Arenas provision. However, I’d be surprised if bidding on Davis is that competitive — his track record is limited and the domestic assault allegations he faced earlier in his career may make teams wary of investing significantly in the 24-year-old.