Sacramento Kings

Players want to ‘do something special’ in Sacramento after signing with Kings

Members of the Kings organization occupied many of the courtside seats at Thomas & Mack Center for Monday’s Las Vegas Summer League game against the Dallas Mavericks.

Owner Vivek Ranadive, general manager Vlade Divac and coach Luke Walton sat on one side of the floor. They were flanked by Marvin Bagley III, Harrison Barnes, Harry Giles III, Buddy Hield and three recent acquisitions who are sharing in the laughter and quickly getting acclimated to their new teammates.

The Kings held a news conference following a 105-100 victory over the Mavericks to formally announce they have re-signed Barnes to a multiyear extension and finalized free-agent deals with Dewayne Dedmon, Trevor Ariza and Cory Joseph. Free agent power forward/center Richaun Holmes is not in Las Vegas this week and will be signed at a later date using the room mid-level exception.

“What we try to build here the last two, three years, we talk about culture and the way we want to play,” Divac said. “These four players fit exactly what we were looking for.”

Retaining Barnes, 27, was the team’s top priority this summer. The Kings signed him to a four-year, $85 million deal with a deescalating salary structure that will amount to just 14 percent of the team’s salary cap in the final year, a league source told The Sacramento Bee.

The Kings knew Barnes could opt out of the final year of his contract to become a free agent when they acquired him at the trade deadline, but both sides expressed a willingness to negotiate a long-term deal.

“Since I’ve gotten to Sacramento, it’s been a great experience,” Barnes said. “The community, the fans and the team have made it feel like home.”

Barnes mentioned the “trajectory” of the Kings’ young roster and the “possibility to do something special.”

Sacramento signed Dedmon, 29, to a three-year, $40-million deal with a partial guarantee in the third year. Dedmon excelled in a fast-paced system with the Atlanta Hawks last season and should be a nice fit for the Kings, who want to push the pace and shoot more 3-pointers.

Dedmon will likely start at center in place of Willie Cauley-Stein, who signed with the Golden State Warriors after the Kings made him an unrestricted free agent. Dedmon runs the floor like Cauley-Stein, but he also shot 38.2 percent from 3-point range last season.

“An up-tempo style is kind of how I’ve been playing,” Dedmon said. “I like to get up and down the floor and shoot 3s. It’s fun basketball.”

Ariza, 34, signed a two-year, $25-million deal with a partial guarantee in the second year. He is expected to give the Kings a veteran backup behind Barnes at the small forward position. Ariza said he is looking forward to playing with a promising Kings team as he enters his 16th season in the league.

“From what I’ve seen and heard around the league, the players on this team want to be better,” Ariza said. “I think that’s the key for your team to be successful.”

Joseph, 27, signed a three-year, $37-million contract with a partial guarantee in the third year. The defensive specialist will give the Kings depth behind De’Aaron Fox at point guard.

“I’m hoping to have a big role,” Joseph said.

The Kings are adding members to their coaching ranks as well. Rico Hines and Stacey Augmon are working with the summer league team and will join the Kings’ player development staff.

“Rico is someone that I’ve worked with since I’ve been 18 years old,” Ariza said. “Once I found out he was coming here, I just knew that, for all the players and everybody involved, the energy that he brings every day is infectious.”

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