Dewayne Dedmon

Reactions To Kings-Trail Blazers Trade

Today’s five-player trade with Portland is the start of an in-season reboot for the Kings, writes Jason Jones of The Athletic. Sacramento was willing to provide financial relief for the Trail Blazers by taking on the remainder of Kent Bazemore‘s $19.3MM expiring contract in the deal, which also netted Anthony Tolliver and a pair of future second-round picks.

By sending out three players in return, the Kings create roster flexibility that could be important in a potential trade of Dewayne Dedmon, Jones adds. The center, who signed a three-year, $40MM contract in free agency, lost his starting job after four games and has been vocal in his displeasure over a reduced role.

Jones notes that the deal is an admission that the summer’s free agency haul was a disappointment. Dedmon appears on the way out, and sending Trevor Ariza to Portland probably had to be done to make that happen. Jones relays that coach Luke Walton was fond of Ariza, but his contract is only partially guaranteed for next season so he may not have been part of the Kings’ future.

Jones believes anyone on Sacramento’s roster — apart from De’Aaron Fox, Marvin Bagley III and Buddy Hield — is a candidate to be traded by the February 6 deadline, even Bogdan Bogdanovic, who will be a restricted free agent this summer.

There’s more reaction to today’s trade announcement:

  • The Kings have been collecting second-rounders and were happy to add two more, observes James Ham of NBC Sports Bay Area. With the addition of Portland’s picks in 2024 and 2025, Sacramento now has 13 second-round selections over the next six seasons. Ham adds that the value of those picks could increase once the league lowers the age requirement for the draft to 18, which is expected by 2022.
  • The trade is a signal that the Blazers have decided to “punt” the rest of the season, claims John Canzano of The Oregonian. He calls it understandable considering Portland had the highest payroll in the league and no playoff hopes other than possibly snatching the eighth seed. He also questions why president of basketball operations Neil Olshey decided to blow up a roster that reached the Western Conference finals last year, trading Evan Turner to the Hawks for Bazemore and sending Meyers Leonard and Maurice Harkless to the Heat for Hassan Whiteside.
  • Jason Quick of the Athletic talked to Bazemore on Friday night about the possibility of being traded. Bazemore had been hoping for a long stay in Portland, but he took a wait-and-see approach after several weeks of hearing his name in trade rumors. “I’ve been around long enough now, man, another day in the life, bro,” he said. “I ain’t even thought about it, honestly. Been traded before … I just go out and ready to go and continue to get better and be my best when the time is right.”

Kings Still Hoping To Trade Dewayne Dedmon

The Kings aren’t done shaking up their roster after agreeing to a five-player trade with the Trail Blazers. ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski tweets that Sacramento is still looking for a way to get rid of Dewayne Dedmon, who has been unhappy with his playing time.

The 30-year-old center was fined earlier this month for making his trade request public. The Kings signed Dedmon to a three-year, $40MM contract over the summer, but he quickly slipped behind Richaun Holmes in the rotation. Dedmon has played just 26 games and is averaging 4.9 points and 4.0 rebounds in 13.8 minutes per night.

A report earlier this week suggested the Hawks might be interested in reacquiring Dedmon, who was their starting center for the past two seasons. Atlanta has enough available cap room that Dedmon’s salary wouldn’t be a burden, but the Kings are reportedly asking for more in return than the Hawks are willing to pay.

Amick’s Latest: Bogdanovic, Drummond, OKC, Gordon, More

Bogdan Bogdanovic‘s name popped up in trade rumors at the start of the week, but the Kings still view the swingman as a key part of their push for the postseason and team sources “swear” they’re comfortable dealing with his restricted free agency this summer, sources tell Sam Amick of The Athletic. Interestingly, Amick notes that it was the Lakers, not the Kings, who initiated those reported trade discussions involving Bogdanovic and Kyle Kuzma.

According to Amick, winning is Bogdanovic’s top priority, and he’s not opposed to the idea of a long-term stay in Sacramento if the team continues to improve. If the Kings fall further out of the playoff race in the coming weeks, it’s possible both sides will become more open to a trade, but the price for Bogdanovic would be high.

Meanwhile, the Kings are also considering the possibility of a Dewayne Dedmon trade, and Amick confirms that the Hawks are among the teams with interest in the big man. However, Sacramento’s asking price for Dedmon has been too high for Atlanta’s liking so far, per Amick.

Amick’s latest Athletic article, which lists 16 top trade candidates from around the NBA, is jam-packed with noteworthy tidbits related to those players. Here are some of the highlights:

  • A source with knowledge of the situation downplays the likelihood of the Hawks and Pistons agreeing on an Andre Drummond trade, according to Amick, who hears from a second source that Atlanta could already have landed the center if the team was willing to include a first-round pick in its offer.
  • The Thunder have been sending “mixed messages” in trade discussions, sources tell Amick. They’re open to making moves if there’s something significant to be gained, but also aren’t opposed to standing pat, given how well they’re playing.
  • “There is chatter coming from Orlando” related to forward Aaron Gordon, one executive tells Amick. However, a source with knowledge of the Warriors‘ activity gave Amick a hard “no” when asked specifically about the possibility of the Magic trading Gordon for D’Angelo Russell. Another source said a Russell deal is “unlikely” to happen this season, Amick adds.
  • The Timberwolves are trying to find upgrades, one general manager tells Amick, who points to Robert Covington as the most logical trade chip to help Minnesota land that upgrade.
  • While the Trail Blazers are frequently cited as a potential Kevin Love landing spot, Amick says there’s “serious skepticism” among key people close to the Blazers that the Cavaliers forward will ever end up in Portland.
  • The Spurs have been gauging DeMar DeRozan‘s trade market, but the guard’s ability to walk in free agency this summer if he lands in an unfavorable spot complicates a potential deal. According to Amick, extension talks between San Antonio and DeRozan aren’t dead yet either. Based on the Spurs’ transaction history, an in-season extension might be more likely than an in-season trade.

Pacific Notes: Dedmon, Giles, AD, Kerr, Clippers

Kings head coach Luke Walton said earlier this week that making Dewayne Dedmon inactive for three consecutive games wasn’t related to the big man’s desire to be traded and wouldn’t necessarily be permanent, as Jason Anderson of The Sacramento Bee writes. Sure enough, an injury to Richaun Holmes gave Dedmon an opportunity to get back on the court on Tuesday.

In fact, Holmes’ absence paved the way for two big men who had been out of the rotation earlier in the season to play significant roles. Harry Giles got his first career NBA start, while Dedmon played 32 minutes off the bench. The duo combined for 20 points and 18 rebounds, helping to lead the Kings to a comeback road win over Phoenix.

According to James Ham of NBC Sports California, both centers received praise from Walton after the game, with the Kings head coach telling reporters that Giles gave the club some “good minutes” and Dedmon “took full advantage” of his opportunity.

With Giles facing unrestricted free agency at season’s end and Dedmon hoping to be dealt, it’s possible neither center has a place in the Kings’ future. But having both players perform well could open some doors for Sacramento at the trade deadline — at the very least, it will help keep the team in the playoff race while Holmes recovers.

Here’s more from around the Pacific:

  • While Anthony Davis will be eligible to earn a projected $202MM over five years with the Lakers on his next contract, he may be more inclined to sign a three-year deal with a player option, writes Eric Pincus of Bleacher Report. That would give Davis the chance to opt out and sign a more lucrative long-term contract in 2022, when he has 10 years of NBA experience.
  • The NBA has fined Warriors head coach Steve Kerr $25K for “verbally abusing” a game official and failing to leave the court immediately after being ejected, the league announced today in a press release. Kerr expressed his displeasure with a call in the second quarter of Monday’s game vs. Sacramento, yelling “Wake your a– up!” at referee Jason Goldenberg.
  • Jovan Buha of The Athletic explores the likelihood of the Clippers adding a veteran like Darren Collison, Aron Baynes, or Thaddeus Young. Buha views a trade for Baynes or Young as a long shot, but believes the Clips shouldn’t hesitate to open a roster spot for Collison if he’s willing to sign with them.

NBA Trade Candidate Watch: Pacific Division

Over the course of the 2019/20 NBA season, up until February’s trade deadline, we’re keeping an eye on potential trade candidates from around the NBA, monitoring their value and exploring the likelihood that they’ll be moved. Each of these looks at possible trade candidates focuses on a specific division, as we zero in on three players from that division.

The Pacific Division has been the subject of a handful of trade rumors lately, including reports suggesting that the Kings and Lakers have touched base on a possible deal and that the Suns and Clippers might make good trade partners for a swap of big men.

As we wait to see whether any of these whispers actually turn into anything concrete, here are three potential trade candidates from around the Pacific:

Kyle Kuzma, PF
Los Angeles Lakers
$2MM cap hit; $3.6MM guaranteed salary in 2020/21; RFA in 2021

As recently as last Friday, word was that the Lakers still viewed Kuzma as a core long-term piece and were focused more on upgrading their roster around the edges. However, Sam Amick of The Athletic suggested over the weekend that the club was open to listening to inquiries on Kuzma, and Marc Stein of The New York Times reported on Monday that the Kings were among the teams with interest.

This may simply be a case of the Lakers doing due diligence. According to Amick, LeBron James remains supportive of Kuzma and general manager Rob Pelinka is believed to be the young forward’s biggest backer. The Lakers’ reported asking price, relayed by Sean Deveney of Heavy.com, is high and seems unlikely to be met. And moving Kuzma for an impact player would be tricky, given his small $2MM cap hit.

On the other hand, Kuzma’s fit in L.A.’s frontcourt is somewhat uncomfortable, since the club likes to use a traditional center. Playing Kuzma alongside, say, Dwight Howard, LeBron, and Anthony Davis isn’t ideal, so if the Lakers can move him in a deal for an impact wing player like Bogdan Bogdanovic or Robert Covington, it might make sense to do so.

I think Kuzma is probably still more likely than not to remain with the Lakers through the deadline, but a trade in the next month wouldn’t be at all shocking.

Dewayne Dedmon, C
Sacramento Kings
$13.3MM cap hit; $13.3MM guaranteed salary in 2020/21; $13.3MM partially guaranteed salary ($1MM) in 2021/22

The Kings’ offseason commitments to Dedmon ($27.7MM in guaranteed money) and Richaun Holmes ($9.8MM) reflected the club’s belief that Dedmon would be the starting center for the foreseeable future, with Holmes playing a backup role. That view made sense — following two strong seasons in Atlanta, Dedmon was a popular mid-level free agent target for teams around the NBA, and the Kings were willing to go even higher than the mid-level to lock him up.

However, it only took four games for new head coach Luke Walton to move Holmes into the starting lineup, demoting Dedmon to a bench role. As Holmes as emerged as one of Sacramento’s most valuable contributors, Dedmon has fallen out of the rotation altogether, having been listed as inactive for the team’s last three games.

Dedmon has publicly confirmed that he’d like to be traded, receiving a $50K fine for his honesty. But his value is low at this point as a result of his struggles in Sacramento. The Kings are reportedly open to moving the big man, but won’t make a deal just to get rid of him.

A shoulder injury suffered by Holmes on Monday night may open up a path for Dedmon to get back into the rotation, which could be the opportunity he needs to show potential suitors he still has value.

Tyler Johnson, G
Phoenix Suns
$19.2MM cap hit; UFA in 2020

Gina Mizell of The Athletic recently identified Johnson as the Suns’ most likely player to be dealt in the coming weeks. Unfortunately for Johnson, that’s not because contenders will be clamoring to add him to their rotations — it’s because of his $19.2MM contract, which will expire in the summer.

It remains to be seen which direction Phoenix will go at the trade deadline, but as long as the team remains in the playoff hunt, targeting an upgrade such as Danilo Gallinari is a possibility. If the Suns were to make a play for someone like Gallinari, who is earning more than $22MM this season, using Johnson’s $19MM+ expiring deal as a salary-matching chip would be the most logical move.

While Johnson is a trade candidate due to his contract situation, he may welcome a change of scenery. After starting the season as a regular contributor in Phoenix, Johnson has fallen out of the rotation, appearing in just six games since the start of December.

Revisit the rest of our 2019/20 Trade Candidate series right here.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

Charania’s Latest: Hawks, Dedmon, Kuzma, Warriors

The 7-27 Hawks have been the NBA’s worst team on the court so far this season, and it hasn’t been smooth sailing for the franchise in the locker room either, writes Shams Charania of The Athletic. Sources tell Charania that there has been a “disconnect at times” between the coaching staff and the club’s most important players.

“No energy, no one playing hard,” one source with knowledge of the Hawks’ situation told The Athletic after a recent loss. Another added: “This s–t is depressing.”

While it has been a discouraging year in Atlanta, the front office remains active and has been targeting a center and a backup point guard on the trade market, per Charania. Chris Kirschner of The Athletic, who recently reported that the Hawks had internally discussed the possibility of pursuing Steven Adams, hears that the team has also considered a reunion with Dewayne Dedmon. Dedmon, who spent the last two seasons in Atlanta, signed with the Kings in the offseason but wants to be traded.

Charania passed along a few more tidbits in his latest Inside Pass column for The Athletic. Here are the highlights:

  • Several teams are doing due diligence on Lakers forward Kyle Kuzma in case he’s placed on the trade block, says Charania. However, league sources tell The Athletic that the Lakers still view Kuzma as a core long-term piece. Additionally, L.A. is more focused on making moves around the edges than making a big splash at the deadline.
  • While the Warriors have made players like Alec Burks and Glenn Robinson III available, rival teams that have talked to the Dubs say the club isn’t looking to move D’Angelo Russell, according to Charania. The Warriors continue to insist they want to see Russell play with a fully healthy roster, and won’t deal him unless they get an offer that blows them away.
  • Knicks forward Marcus Morris and Wizards sharpshooter Davis Bertans have drawn interest from teams around the NBA, but it’s not clear if either player will be dealt. Wizards GM Tommy Sheppard has stated his team wants to retain Bertans, and Charania writes that New York prefers to keep Morris. Still, I doubt either player would be untouchable if the right offer surfaces.

Kings’ Dewayne Dedmon Fined For Public Trade Request

Kings center Dewayne Dedmon has been fined $50K for “public statements detrimental to the NBA and its teams,” the league announced today in a press release. The penalty stems from Dedmon’s comments to The Sacramento Bee about his desire to be traded out of Sacramento.

“I would like to be traded,” Dedmon said on Sunday. “I haven’t been playing, so I would like to go somewhere where my talents are appreciated.”

The fine comes as no surprise. While players and agents are generally permitted to ask for trades via back-channels, the NBA’s Collective Bargaining Agreement prohibits them from publicly announcing those requests.

Anthony Davis was fined $50K last winter when agent Rich Paul publicly asked for a trade, so Dedmon received an identical penalty for his comments.

Kings’ Dewayne Dedmon Confirms Trade Request

11:40am: The NBA will investigate Dedmon’s comments to determine whether he’ll be fined, according to Chris Haynes of Yahoo Sports. As noted below, the league’s CBA prohibits players from publicly requesting a trade.

8:55am: Shams Charania of The Athletic reported on Friday that Kings center Dewayne Dedmon, who has fallen out of the team’s rotation after signing a three-year, $41MM contract in the summer, wants to be dealt. Speaking on Sunday to Jason Anderson of The Sacramento Bee, Dedmon made no effort to deny Charania’s report or downplay his desire to be moved.

“I would like to be traded,” Dedmon confirmed. “I haven’t been playing, so I would like to go somewhere where my talents are appreciated.”

Dedmon, 30, was coming off two solid seasons in Atlanta when he reached unrestricted free agency this past offseason. In 2018/19, he averaged a career-best 10.8 PPG to go along with 7.5 RPG, 1.1 SPG, 1.1 BPG, and a .382 3PT%. That performance made him a popular target on the open market and resulted in a lucrative contract offer from Sacramento.

However, Dedmon was outplayed by bigs like Richaun Holmes and Nemanja Bjelica in the early going this season. With Marvin Bagley III and Harrison Barnes also in the frontcourt mix, head coach Luke Walton hasn’t found minutes for the former Hawk as of late — Dedmon, who is making just 41.9% of his shots from the field this season, has only played seven total minutes since December 6, and is frustrated that he hasn’t gotten more of a chance to reverse his slow start.

“I’m not the only person struggling with my shot, so if that’s a factor then it’s kind of crazy,” Dedmon told Anderson. “If you’re not allowed to shoot through your slumps, I don’t know how you’re supposed to make shots.”

Dedmon is earning $13MM+ this season and has another fully guaranteed year left on his deal, so the Kings may still want to get him back into the rotation at some point to rebuild his value and salvage their investment. However, the veteran big man sounds skeptical that things will turn around for him in Sacramento.

“I definitely appreciate (the Kings’ investment), but I want to be somewhere where I get to play,” Dedmon said. “That’s my biggest thing. I’m trying to play and I’ve been told I’m no longer in the rotation here, so there’s really nothing to wait on.”

According to Anderson, the Kings are listening to offers for Dedmon and there may be a market for his services, but the front office will insist that any deal must make sense for the team’s future. Sam Quinn of CBS Sports recently speculated that teams like the Clippers, Celtics, Timberwolves, Trail Blazers, and Hawks could be fits for Dedmon. Anderson adds the Mavericks and Magic to that list of hypothetical suitors.

The NBA’s Collective Bargaining Agreement prohibits players from making public trade demands, so we’ll see if the league responds to Dedmon’s comments. Anthony Davis was fined $50K last winter when agent Rich Paul publicly requested a trade.

Dewayne Dedmon Wants Out Of Sacramento

When Dewayne Dedmon signed his three-year, $41MM contract with Sacramento this offseason, the plan was for him to play a major role as a floor stretching big. However, Richaun Holmes has severely outplayed Dedmon, forcing coach Luke Walton to sour on the 30-year-old big man.

Now, Shams Charania of The Athletic hears that Dedmon wants out of Sacramento and multiple teams are speaking with the Kings about acquiring him prior to this year’s trade deadline.

The center has not played in eight of the last 10 games for the Kings. Neither the franchise nor Dedmon believes that they can work things out and move forward past the trade deadline.

Dedmon’s $41MM deal may make it a challenge for Sacramento to find a taker, but it’s not as onerous as other contracts that have been moved in recent years. His third-year salary is only partially guaranteed for $1MM, so teams aiming to open up cap room for 2021 may still kick the tires on the veteran big man.

Harry Giles: Lack Of Role Is “Tough”

The Kings used a first-round pick on Harry Giles in 2017 and seemed to view him as a franchise cornerstone during his de facto rookie season in 2018/19. However, Sacramento turned down its fourth-year option for 2020/21 on Giles this fall and the big man has only appeared in seven games so far this season, logging 52 total minutes.

Giles, whose rookie season was wiped out due to knee problems, is healthy now after battling injuries in recent years. Still, he hasn’t seen the court since November 27 and admits to Jason Anderson of The Sacramento Bee that falling out of the rotation this season has been difficult.

“It’s tough,” Giles said. “I’m a competitor, so it’s hard, but it is what it is. It’s not my decision. All I can do is work hard every day, control what I can control, and stay as ready as I can. What else can I do?”

As Anderson notes, Giles was expected to vie with Richaun Holmes for backup center minutes behind Dewayne Dedmon this season, but the Kings’ frontcourt rotation has been upended as a result of impressive performances from Holmes and Nemanja Bjelica. Neither Dedmon nor Giles has played as of late, though head coach Luke Walton suggests both big men should get another chance at some point.

“He’s going to get an opportunity and it’s his job to be ready and take full advantage of that,” Walton said of Giles. “Right now, we feel like our best group is tightening the rotation and keeping as much shooting and spacing out there as we can. With Marvin [Bagley] coming back, we wanted to get him in that rotation, but we’re playing eight or nine guys right now, so it’s more of a numbers thing. We want to play everyone, but we can’t.”

While the Kings say Giles will get another chance and insist he hasn’t been ruled out as a long-term piece, it seems unlikely at this point that his time in Sacramento will extend beyond this season — especially with Bagley, Holmes, Dedmon, and Bjelica all on multiyear deals. Giles, who will be an unrestricted free agent at season’s end, will be just 22 years old at that time, so I’d expect another NBA team to roll the dice on his upside if Sacramento doesn’t retain him.