LAS VEGAS –- It looked like old times as John Wall, Bradley Beal and Garrett Temple sat next to each other during the Wizards’ third summer league game Tuesday – but one was no longer a teammate.
Temple signed a three-year deal with the Sacramento Kings worth $24 million, with a player option for the final season. In one year, he’ll earn more than he had in his entire career as he played on a series of 10-day deals and minimum contracts. He spent the last four years in Washington as a utility guard off the bench though he had to make a lot of starts (97) because of injuries to Wall and Beal.
“The Wizards were the first team that gave me an actual NBA home, something I’m going to always hold in high regard to get me back into the league,” said Temple, who bounced around from the Houston Rockets in 2009 to the Kings, San Antonio Spurs, Milwaukee Bucks and Charlotte Hornets until sticking in D.C. “I talked to Ernie and I just thanked him for allowing me to get back in the NBA. It’s a business. Sacramento came in and showed interest from the get-go. I’m happy to go to a team that really values me.”
The Kings haven’t won more than 33 games in a season with DeMarcus Cousins, but they’ve added a lot of veterans to help change the directon. Anthony Tolliver, Arron Afflalo and Matt Barnes will join Temple.
“I’m excited to see these guys and see what type of culture we’re going to start in Sacramento,” he said. “You add that to the best center in the league and hopefully that’s makes for a great season.”
Temple, however, was here watching the Wizarrds in a competitive game with the Brooklyn Nets. And he couldn't have had better company.
"The four years I spent with these guys, we’re going to be friends for life," Temple said. "John was probably the first guy to reach out to me when it happened. Brad was a close second. It’s a mutual respect between all of us. It’s more than former teammates. It’s long-term friends."
The new look of the locker room will be different for Beal. He'll be missing his closest friend.
"With every player there’s always something you miss, whether it’s a personal relationship off the court or as a great teammate on the court. Like Temp, he got a great deal with Sac (ramento)," Beal said. "I couldn’t be more happy for him. I’m mad because that was my guy when I came in from Day 1 who was with me but at the end of the day it’s business. He has a life just like I do."