The Kings and Bulls have agreed to a trade, according to several reports. That's one of two deals for the Kings, reports the Sacramento Bee:
According to numerous league sources, a trade sending Kings players Brad Miller and John Salmons to Chicago in exchange for Andres Nocioni, Drew Gooden, Michael Ruffin and Cedric Simmons has been agreed upon and is pending league approval.
In a separate deal with Portland, fourth-year forward Ike Diogu comes to the Kings for Ruffin. The Kings are also expected to receive approximately $1 million in the trade with Portland.
The trades put their roster at 17 players, and it is expected that they will waive newly-acquired point guard Sam Cassell. They will need to make an additional cut as well to trim the roster to a league-limit 15.
The Kings are not only a bad team, but an expensive bad team that had a payroll of $69 million before this deal. At a time when they desperately need to improve their salary cap situation for the future, the Chicago trade saves them approximately $13.5 million in salary cap room for next season. It could potentially make them more relevant in the free agent market this summer or allow the payroll flexibility to be more active on the trade front after this season. Beyond next season, though, Nocioni's contract will add $6.9 million to payroll in 2010-11 and $6.7 million in 2011-12. Gooden, Ruffin and Simmons all have expiring contracts worth $7.1 million, $1.1 million, and $1.7 million respectively.
Diogu's contract is worth $2.9 million this season, and he will be a restricted free agent this summer. He was drafted ninth overall in 2005 and will follow in the footsteps of Shelden Williams as the latest frontline prospect the Kings hope experiences a revival while on their roster.
The Cavs had been eyeing Miller, as the Cleveland Plain Dealer reports:
The Cavs had been in talks with the Kings for Miller for an extended period and up until yesterday were still weighing its merits. They had been doing a fair amount of background research on Miller and were considering how he might fit.
But they fell behind in the bidding when the Bulls offered a more competitive package and also were looking to take Salmons off the books. The Kings were reportedly also talking to the Knicks about Miller and seemed to be offering a better talent package than the Cavs, who refused to part with J.J. Hickson.