With recent rumors suggesting that Sacramento Kings shooting guard Bogdan Bogdanovic is unhappy with his current role as the team’s sixth man, a new report proposed that the New York Knicks could address their issues with outside shooting by making a move for the Serbian star before the February trade deadline.
As noted by Forbes, the Kings made a pair of big moves in the lead-up to the 2019-20 regular season, signing shooting guard Buddy Hield to a four-year, $94 million extension on Monday and, months before that, re-signing veteran forward Harrison Barnes to a new four-year, $85 million contract. While Sacramento was eligible to retain Bogdanovic for another four years and $51 million, the 27-year-old guard reportedly turned down this offer, allowing him to enter restricted free agency in the summer of 2020 and potentially command a higher asking price.
As the Kings might not have enough salary-cap space to match rival teams’ offers for Bogdanovic next summer, Forbes‘ Tommy Beer wrote that it “makes sense” for Sacramento to put him on the trading block ahead of the February deadline, rather than risk “losing him for nothing” if he jumps ship as a free agent. He suggested that the Knicks — a rebuilding team that added several forwards and centers over the summer — should ideally target someone like Bogdanovic, especially since New York was among the worst teams in the NBA in terms of both three-point shots made per game and three-point shooting percentage in the 2018-19 season.
Talking about the players New York could offer to Sacramento in a deal for Bogdanovic, Beer suggested that the Knicks could trade a veteran big man like Marcus Morris or Taj Gibson and sweeten the deal by adding a protected draft pick to their offer. Both Morris and Gibson signed two-year contracts as free agents in the summer of 2019, with the option on the second year of these deals allowing for “contractual flexibility.” It was also suggested that either one of these two veterans could give the Kings some much-needed depth at power forward behind youngster Marvin Bagley III.
Given that the Knicks also have a three-way logjam at point guard with Dennis Smith Jr., Elfrid Payton, and Frank Ntilikina, Beer noted that New York might be more inclined to move one of them. But since the Kings have a stable situation at point guard with De’Aaron Fox and Cory Joseph, the Forbes columnist suggested that New York could “get creative” and make it a three-way trade, preferably involving a third team in need of a youthful, athletic floor leader.
In three NBA seasons — all with the Kings — Bogdanovic has tallied career averages of 12.8 points, 3.1 rebounds, and 3.5 assists while shooting 42.9 percent from the field and 37.6 percent from beyond the arc, per Basketball-Reference.