8:54pm: Now that the Kings’ three-team trade with the Cavs and Jazz is complete, Papagiannis’ release has been made official as well, the team confirmed in a press release.
4:03pm: After exploring the trade market and not finding a deal, the Kings intend to waive former lottery pick Georgios Papagiannis, according to Shams Charania of Yahoo Sports (Twitter link).
Papagiannis, a 7’1″ center, was selected by the Kings with the 13th overall pick in the 2016 draft after the team traded down from No. 8. It was a surprising pick at the time, and Papagiannis’ play in his first season and a half in the NBA didn’t exactly vindicate Sacramento’s choice.
In 38 career contests, Papagiannis has averaged 4.2 PPG and 3.2 RPG. The big man appears to have taken a step back this season, having seen his FG% dip to just .415. Of course, the sample size is small — Papagiannis has averaged just 7.4 minutes per game in 16 contests.
Any team with interest in claiming Papagiannis off waivers would need cap room or an exception to absorb his $2,301,360 salary for this season. He also has a guaranteed $2,400,480 salary for 2018/19, with a $3,430,286 team option for 2019/20.
The Kings already parted with one 2016 first-round pick earlier today, agreeing to send Malachi Richardson to Toronto in a trade with the Raptors. Sacramento acquired Bruno Caboclo in that deal and was reportedly set to waive him to clear the room necessary to take on two players for George Hill in another trade. With Papagiannis now on his way out, it’s not clear if the Kings will still waive Caboclo too. (Update: They don’t plan to.)