Kings Blog

Kings land Bogdanovic, top European shooter – but checkbook’s just getting warmed up

Serbia's Bogdan Bogdanovic (7) celebrates after making a three-point basket during a quarterfinal round basketball game against Croatia at the 2016 Summer Olympics in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, Wednesday, Aug. 17, 2016.
Serbia's Bogdan Bogdanovic (7) celebrates after making a three-point basket during a quarterfinal round basketball game against Croatia at the 2016 Summer Olympics in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, Wednesday, Aug. 17, 2016. AP

The Kings will finally get to see their uniform on one of the key players acquired in last year’s draft-day trades.

The Kings have reached an agreement with EuroLeague star and Turkish League MVP Bogdan Bogdanovic on a three-year, $36 million contract, league sources told The Bee. Bogdanovic can sign the deal on July 6 when the moratorium on free-agent signings ends.

Bogdanovic was three years removed from being drafted by Phoenix, so his contract was not under the constraints of the rookie salary scale. The Kings were about $52 million below the projected salary cap of around $99 million, giving them plenty of spending power to lure Bogdanovic, who they believe will improve their perimeter shooting.

The NBA will test the skills Bogdanovic displayed in Europe and provide him a chance to show he can compete among the world’s best players.

Securing his deal marks the first step in what could be a busy offseason for the Kings. Their finances position them to be major players in free agency, which begins 9:01 p.m. PST on Friday, as well as the trade market.

The current roster has been remodeled largely due to two trades.

The Kings acquired the draft rights to Bogdanovic last year during the NBA draft in a trade with Phoenix. The Suns drafted Bogdanovic, 24, with the 27th pick in the 2014 NBA draft and sent his rights, along with the 13th and 28th picks in last year’s draft, to Sacramento for the eighth pick in the draft (Marquese Chriss).

The Kings used the picks to select center Georgios Papagiannis 13th and forward Skal Labissiere 28th.

The other major trade sent DeMarcus Cousins to New Orleans in February. The Kings added guard Buddy Hield and used the draft pick acquired from New Orleans (10th overall) to trade down to add North Carolina forward Justin Jackson (15th) and Duke forward Harry Giles (20th).

Bogdanvic, however, will be expected to contribute more quickly than the other 2017 rookies, including guards De’Aaron Fox (fifth overall pick) and Frank Mason (34th).

Bogdanovic, a 6-foot-6 guard from Serbia, led Fenerbahce to its first EuroLeague title last month. He’s considered one of the best shooters in Europe. He was also on the Serbian national team that won the silver medal in the 2016 Olympics.

He averaged 14.6 points on 50 percent shooting last season. That includes shooting 43 percent from 3-point range.

With guard Ben McLemore an unrestricted free agent after the Kings declined to make him a qualifying offer, general manager Vlade Divac no longer has any players who were under contract when he took over as general manager from Pete D’Alessandro in 2015.

With rookies De’Aaron Fox, Frank Mason III, Justin Jackson and Harry Giles added to an already young Sacramento Kings team, coach Dave Joerger is focused on the future.

He's also looking forward to working with coach Dave Joerger. Fox says on his visit to Sacramento before the draft that Joerger sat and broke down film with him.

"We're rookies...it's going to be hard for us. So we gotta come in from day one and try our hardest."

The Kings rookie has nothing but good things to say about the city, the facility and the team.

Jason Jones: @mr_jasonjones, read more about the team at sacbee.com/kings.

Facebook live Q&A

Join Kings insiders Jason Jones and Ailene Voisin live on The Sacramento Bee’s Facebook page starting at 6:30 p.m. Thursday to discuss the draft, free agency, Bogdan Bogdanovic and other questions you might have. facebook.com/sacramentobee

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