Kings relocating G-League affiliate from Reno to Stockton


Kings relocating G-League affiliate from Reno to Stockton

Change is a good thing. The Sacramento Kings made a major announcement regarding their G-League affiliate on Monday afternoon. After a decade in Reno, the Bighorns are moving to Stockton, pending league approval.

Just a 45 minute drive from Downtown Sacramento, the City of Stockton has an arena and a perfect location to shuttle players back and forth from. The Bighorns will play at Stockton Arena and relocate their business operations to that area. They will use the Kings’ former practice facility at the Arco Arena site as their headquarters of basketball operations and have full use of the Golden 1 Center facility.

“Our NBA G-League team has been an incredible asset to help prepare players for NBA action and bringing the team closer to Sacramento will allow us to continue to build on that success and increase efficiency to this valuable development tool,” Sacramento Kings general manager Vlade Divac said via press release. “Kings fans in Stockton will now have an opportunity to see the next generation of NBA players each week.”

Led by general manager Anthony McClish, the Bighorns hosted five different young Kings players this season, including Skal Labissiere, Justin Jackson, Malachi Richardson, Georgios Papagiannis and Bruno Caboclo.

During the 2017-18 season, the Bighorns also supported two-way players JaKarr Sampson and Jack Cooley, and boast three G-League call up players in David Stockton (Utah Jazz), Reggie Hearn (Detroit Pistons) and Aaron Harrison (Dallas Mavericks).

Built in 2005, Stockton Arena is the home of the Stockton Heat of the American Hockey League. The 12,000 seat arena is just 48 miles from Golden 1 Center, roughly 85 miles closer to Sacramento than Reno.

“It’s my honor to welcome the Kings organization to Stockton and I look forward to watching NBA G-League action at the Stockton Arena,” Stockton Mayor Michael Tubbs said in the press release. “The Kings have been known for their tremendous impact in the community and we’re excited to have their full support as we continue to reinvent Stockton.”

The Kings still need to clear a few hurdles. They need league approval to move the franchise and Stockton City Council plans to review and vote on the agreement on Tuesday, April 17.

According to the press release, the team is getting a new identity, “that reflects the marks and history of the parent club in Sacramento.” The new branding will take place sometime this spring.

Divac explains why Bagley over Doncic was an 'easy choice' for Kings

Divac explains why Bagley over Doncic was an 'easy choice' for Kings

SACRAMENTO -- Deliberate. Calculated. Secretive. The Sacramento Kings held the NBA in suspense throughout the 2018 NBA Draft process. It wasn’t until Thursday morning that anyone knew for sure what Vlade Divac and his group were going to do and even then, there was a possibility of a last minutes swap.

With the second overall pick the Kings selected Duke big man, Marvin Bagley III. According to Divac, Sacramento focused on the 19-year-old leaper early in the draft process.

“He’s a guy who works hard, wants to improve, learn, coachable, good teammate, checks all the boxes of what we want,” Divac said.

Bagley tore up the ACC in his lone season as a Blue Devil and has been vocal about his want to be the first overall selection. He reiterated that desire on his post draft phone call with Sacramento media members on Thursday.

“That’s just the kind of player I am, I have confidence in my game,” Bagley said. “I still think I’m the best player in the draft and I stand by that. I put a lot of work into it and I’m glad I’ll be able to show it with Sacramento and I’m super excited.”

With Bagley in tow, the Kings now have six big men, including veterans Zach Randolph and Kosta Koufos, as well as young players Willie Cauley-Stein, Skal Labissiere and Harry Giles. It’s a crowded frontline that Divac will need to adress, or maybe not.

“He can play small forward,” Divac said of Bagley. “He can play 3, 4 and 5. Marvin’s a unique talent. He can play multiple positions.”

[RELATED: How Marvin Bagley fits with Kings]

Whether or not Bagley can play the wing is unknown at this time. He played primarily at the power forward and center position at Duke. At 6-foot-11, 234 pounds, he is a lean athlete and he shot nearly 40 percent from behind the 3-point line last season.

Much to the ire of plenty of Kings fans, Sacramento’s front office passed on Slovenian star, Luka Doncic. When asked about the decision, Divac made it clear where his group ranked Bagley.

"Marvin, for us is better fit, better player. Great talent. So it was an easy choice for us," Divac said.

Bagley will land in Sacramento Friday morning. The Kings will introduce him to fans during Music in the Park at Cesar Chavez Plaza at 5pm.

He will meet with the media on Saturday for his introductory press conference and according to Divac, fans won’t have to wait long to see him in action. The plan is for Bagley to see action in both Sacramento and Las Vegas summer league tournaments beginning in early July.

Kings trade No. 37 overall selection in 2018 NBA Draft for two future second-round picks


Kings trade No. 37 overall selection in 2018 NBA Draft for two future second-round picks

SACRAMENTO -- With all of the fanfare focused on Marvin Bagley III, the Sacramento Kings snuck in another Duke Blue Devil with the 37th overall selection, taking guard Gary Trent Jr. with their second round pick in the 2018 NBA Draft.

Moments later, it was announced that they had a deal in place to ship Trent to the Portland Trail Blazers for two future second round selections.

With eight players on rookie scale contracts already on the roster, plus the addition of Bagley, the Kings were expected to move off of their second-round selection this season. 

Trent, 19, averaged 14.5 points and 4.2 rebounds a game as a freshman this season for Duke. He is the son of former Trail Blazers big man, Gary Trent.