Practical Max Cap Space: $24.5 Million
De’Aaron Fox- $19.9 Million until 2021
Bogdan Bogdanovic- $17.5 Million until 2020
Key Free Agents:
Best Free Agent Target:
Despite the negative connotation, the Sacramento Kings are basically the Cleveland Browns of the NBA. While many Kings fans may have closed this tab already, hear me out. Sacramento is a smaller market that isn’t an A-list free agent destination but it is a franchise that has a rich history (except late May of 1992, Sacramento can push that time aside). The Kings are also one of the most looked-down-upon teams in basketball and they seem to be on the receiving end of many punchlines. But, when you look at this offseason specifically, both teams the Browns and Kings are near the top of their leagues in cap space and youth (average age of 25.7). As a rebuilding team, Cleveland used their cap not to bring in the star names, but to move around and grab solid young assets that can be used down the road. I see the Kings makings similar moves this offseason with their space. Sacramento likely won’t be able to land a meeting with guys in the LeBron James and Paul George universe, but they still have what it takes to grab some good young players. A solid strategy that would be wise for the team to use is to “poach” some of the top tier restricted free agents in this year’s class. Guys like Clint Capela, Julius Randle, Jabari Parker and Aaron Gordon should be out on the market and available in limited capacity. These players and their respective teams will likely make some sort of deal to be retained but there is always the option for other teams to go in and make a large offer the original team can’t or won’t match. This is where the Kings can swoop in and land someone great. Of all the players named above, my bet would be that Sacramento has the best chance of landing Randle. The Lakers have lots of big plans this offseason which may or may not include the services of Randle, leaving him available for a team like the Kings to take. He would also fit in to Sacramento’s young roster and would likely be the best player on their team. The Kings could build around him, their top draft pick in 2018 and De’Aaron Fox going forward and soon become a Western Conference playoff team. For both the Kings and Browns, the present may look bleak but the future is bright, and that future starts with moves made or to be made in the offseason.