Sacramento Kings

Kings offer Bogdan Bogdanovic $51.4 million contract extension, but he hasn’t signed

Kings guard Bogdan Bogdanovic said the team has offered him a maximum contract extension that would pay more than $50 million and keep him in Sacramento for four more years, but he is in no hurry to sign it.

Bogdanovic told The Sacramento Bee he wants to take his time with the decision. He would prefer to remain in Sacramento, but he could receive more lucrative offers if he waits to become a restricted free agent this summer.

“I would like to stay,” Bogdanovic said. “Everyone knows that I love Sacramento. Everyone loves to be here. It’s a great group of guys. I’m happy right now and I was happy all these years, but I don’t want to rush anything.”

The Kings are involved in negotiations with Bogdanovic and guard Buddy Hield as they prepare to close out their preseason schedule against Melbourne United of Australia on Wednesday at Golden 1 Center. Point guard De’Aaron Fox will not play due to a sore lower back following a physical 128-115 victory over the Utah Jazz on Monday in Salt Lake City.

The Kings have until Oct. 21 to re-sign Hield and until June 30 to re-sign Bogdanovic or both players will become restricted free agents this summer. The team views Hield, 26, and Bogdanovic, 27, as important pieces of a talented core that could lead Sacramento back to the playoffs for the first time since 2006. However, general manager Vlade Divac and his front office must manage the salary cap carefully with Fox and forward Marvin Bagley III set to become eligible for their own extensions in 2020 and 2021, respectively.

In an interview with The Bee last week, Hield made it clear he wants to reach an agreement before the Oct. 21 deadline for rookie-scale extensions, but the team might benefit from waiting. The opposite is probably true for Bogdanovic, who is entering his third season with the Kings and the final year of a three-year, $27 million deal. He is eligible for a four-year extension worth about $51.4 million – an average of $12.85 million per year – but he would likely receive larger offers in free agency.

When asked if the Kings had offered him the maximum extension, Bogdanovic said: “Yeah, they did, but we will wait to see. Maybe we will sign tomorrow. Maybe we sign in a month. Who knows? We will see.”

Bogdanovic is being advised by his agent, Jason Ranne, who could not be reached Tuesday. If Bogdanovic becomes a restricted free agent, Sacramento will have the right to match any offer he receives from another team. That could prove costly for the Kings with growing speculation Bogdanovic will command a much higher salary if he becomes a coveted player in a weak free-agent market.

“I don’t know about all that,” Bogdanovic said. “I just want to see what’s going on with the team, where are we going, and of course I want to be a part of the franchise always, but I’m just not focused on that. That’s a job for my agent to do. And everyone who knows me, they know money’s not the first thing on my mind. It is important, of course, but it’s not the first thing always.”

Bogdanovic averaged 14.1 points, 3.8 assists and 3.5 rebounds in a backup role for the Kings last season. He shot 37.5 percent from 3-point range over his first two NBA seasons.

Hield averaged a team-high 20.7 points per game last season. He shot 42.7 percent from 3-point range and became the first player in NBA history to make 600 3-pointers in his first three seasons.

Hield established himself as the team’s starting shooting guard last season when Bogdanovic missed the start of the season due to injury. Hield is emerging as one of the NBA’s most dangerous 3-point shooters while Bogdanovic, hot off a spectacular summer with the Serbian national team, is gaining notoriety as a potential Sixth Man of the Year candidate.

Sacramento Kings preseason schedule

Oct. 4: Indiana Pacers 132, Kings 131 (OT)

Oct. 5: Indiana Pacers 130, Kings 106

Oct. 10: Kings 105, Phoenix Suns 88

Oct. 14: Kings 128, Utah Jazz 115

Wednesday: vs. Melbourne United, 7 p.m.

Jason Anderson is an award-winning sportswriter for The Sacramento Bee. He started his journalism career at The Bee more than 20 years ago and returned to cover the Sacramento Kings in September 2018.