Kings

NBA rumors: Kings will go after Tobias Harris once free agency starts

NBA rumors: Kings will go after Tobias Harris once free agency starts

The Sacramento Kings are one of the up-and-coming teams in the NBA and they have money to spend to try to improve their squad.

One of the players they could target is power forward Tobias Harris.

The Philadelphia Inquirer reported on Tuesday that the Kings are among five teams that could pursue Harris once he becomes an unrestricted free agent.

The Dallas Mavericks, Indiana Pacers, Utah Jazz and Brooklyn Nets are the other four teams that would have interest, according to the report.

The Inquirer reports that the biggest contract the Kings and any other team can offer Harris is $141 million over four years, while the incumbent Philadelphia 76ers can top that with a five-year, $188 million contract offer.

According to Spotrac.com, the Kings enter the offseason with $35.8 million in practical cap space.

Harris, who averaged a career-high 20.0 points per game this season with the Los Angeles Clippers and 76ers, would be an interesting fit with the Kings. Harrison Barnes has a player option worth more than $25 million, and the expectation is that he will exercise it. Marvin Bagley III, who was named to the All-Rookie First Team, should be the starter at power forward next season, so Harris' addition could complicate things. But at 6-foot-11, Bagley could potentially slide over to center, giving the Kings a smaller, but more dynamic lineup option.

[RELATED: Kings start search for second-round steals]

It will be interesting to see what the Kings do this offseason. After a 39-43 season, expectations in Sacramento are high, and their odds of winning an NBA title are increasing.

Spend your money wisely, Vlade Divac.

What does Harrison Barnes' choice to become free agent mean for Kings?

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USATSI

What does Harrison Barnes' choice to become free agent mean for Kings?

SACRAMENTO -- Harrison Barnes, unrestricted free agent.

The news certainly came as a surprise Tuesday morning when the Kings forward chose to walk away from the final year of his contract that would have paid him $25.1 million next season.

While it might have been slightly unexpected, it wasn’t for Kings general manager Vlade Divac and his team. It might have even been the plan all along.

At 27 years old, Barnes has plenty of basketball in his future, and the Kings would like him to remain a part of that. According to multiple sources, the Kings are confident they can lock up their starting small forward to a long-term deal.

There's always a risk that Barnes will find the open market enticing and leave without compensation for Sacramento. That would be bad news for the Kings’ offseason plans, but it also would open up a massive amount of salary-cap space for the team to aggressively pursue other options.

Don’t be shocked if Barnes and the Kings move quickly on a four-year deal once free agency opens June 30. Barnes follows the age arc of most of the roster, and he instantly fit in as a veteran leader with deep playoff experience.

Barnes had the option of accepting his player option and then working on an extension with the Kings later in the offseason. By opting out, there is a possibility that he is willing to forgo some of the $25.1 million this season for a long-term stability.

Is Barnes worth a four-year, $72 million to $80 million contract? To the Kings, the answer is yes. And a contract like that immediately would impact Sacramento’s bottom line.

With Barnes, the Kings have approximately $67 million in guaranteed contracts for the upcoming season. That doesn’t include a $6.3 million qualifying offer for Willie Cauley-Stein, $1.6 million in non-guaranteed money for Frank Mason, or a team option on Yogi Ferrell at $3.1 million.

Without Barnes’ $25.1 million, Sacramento has $41.9 million in guaranteed deals and $67.1 million in available space. The Kings have another $6.3 million in minimum salary-cap holds, giving them roughly $60.8 million in available space, again, without Ferrell, Cauley-Stein or Mason.

There are further cap implications, like massive holds for Barnes and Cauley-Stein, but those are complicated and require far more explanation. The short answer is that the Kings can eliminate those holds by renouncing their rights to either player.

While nothing is locked up with Barnes as of June 18, this might be a perfect world scenario for the Kings. If he takes a longer-term deal, but with a reduced salary in Year 1, it gives the team additional resources up front while retaining an important part of their core.

A starting salary of $18 million to $20 million would open an extra $5 million to $7 million in cap space for this summer, giving Divac and his staff the ammunition necessary to chase a major free agent and still have enough to make one or two major additional improvements.

[RELATED: Kings get good look at two guards in final pre-draft workout]

This likely is the Kings’ road map for this summer, although there are no guarantees that they can pull it all off. Step one now is to retain Barnes. Step two is to swing for the fences and fill the voids in the rotation.

Source: Kings' Harrison Barnes declines $25M option, now free agent

Source: Kings' Harrison Barnes declines $25M option, now free agent

Harrison Barnes had until June 29 to mull over a $25 million player option for next season, and it appears the veteran forward has made his decision.

NBC Sports California confirmed Tuesday that Barnes informed the Kings that he'll walk away from the final year of his deal and become an unrestricted free agent.

ESPN's Adrian Wojnarowski was first to report the news.

According to a league source, Sacramento is confident it can keep Barnes in the fold with a new long-term contract, although the former Maverick and Warrior has the ability to sign with any NBA team once free agency begins June 30. 

[RELATED: Barnes looks back on India trip]

With Barnes opting out, the Kings' salary-cap figure just dramatically shifted. Sacramento has just under $42 million in guaranteed contracts for this season, leaving the team with close to $67 million in available cash to spend. 

Barnes spent plenty of time in Sacramento early this summer working out with his current teammates. He also made a trip to India with the NBA, where the Kings will play two games during the upcoming preseason.