Kings’ Fox hopes Hield gets new con­tract

Lodi News-Sentinel - - SPORTS - By Ja­son An­der­son

Kings point guard De’Aaron Fox threw his sup­port be­hind team­mate Buddy Hield on Satur­day af­ter Hield ex­pressed a de­sire to stay in Sacra­mento and some frus­tra­tion over con­tract talks with the team.

Fox and Hield have emerged as one of the most dy­namic young back­courts in the league. Fox en­vi­sions a promising fu­ture with Hield in Sacra­mento, but the Kings are fac­ing an Oct. 21 dead­line to re­sign Hield, who is el­i­gi­ble for a mas­sive con­tract ex­ten­sion that could im­pact the or­ga­ni­za­tion’s abil­ity to keep other core pieces.

A league source told The Sacra­mento Bee there was no new move­ment in ne­go­ti­a­tions be­tween Hield and the team Satur­day. Hield has told The Bee he wants to re­main in Sacra­mento and is ea­ger to fi­nal­ize a long-term agree­ment.

“Ev­ery­body deals with their own, so it’s some­thing I worry about, but ob­vi­ously I want to con­tinue to play with a guy like that,” Fox told James Ham of NBC Sports Cal­i­for­nia. “For me, just hope­fully they get it done.”

Fol­low­ing Thurs­day’s pre­sea­son vic­tory over the Phoenix Suns, Hield told The Sacra­mento Bee he wants to get a deal done now, but he in­di­cated the two sides are not close to an agree­ment.

“As a player, you want to have that trust that the fran­chise has your back and we’re just wait­ing for them to make a move and come to an agree­ment,” Hield said. “They’re talk­ing, but noth­ing is mov­ing yet. Noth­ing has moved. I’m ready to make things hap­pen, man. I want to make Sacra­mento my home. I’m ready to get this s—- done. I want to be here and if it doesn’t hap­pen, then things can go the other way.”

Fox, 21, and Hield, 26, made huge strides to­gether last sea­son, lead­ing the Kings to a 39-win sea­son.

Hield av­er­aged a team-high 20.7 points and shot 42.7 per­cent from 3-point range, emerg­ing as one of the league’s most elite long-range shoot­ers. Fox av­er­aged 17.3 points and 7.3 as­sists while shoot­ing 37.1 per­cent from be­yond the arc.

Fox told NBC Sports Cal­i­for­nia he wants to keep the Kings’ young core to­gether.

“For sure,” Fox said. “I think we have a lot of things that we can con­tinue to get bet­ter at, and I think once ev­ery­one is at their peak, I think we’ll be a hell of a team.”

Hield is el­i­gi­ble for a four-year rookie-scale ex­ten­sion worth up to $130.7 mil­lion or a five-year des­ig­nated-player ex­ten­sion worth up to $170 mil­lion. He will be­come a re­stricted free agent next sum­mer if the Kings don’t re-sign him by Oct. 21. Hield isn’t de­mand­ing a max of­fer, but the Kings might have to come close to reach an agree­ment be­fore the dead­line.

Bog­dan Bog­danovic, a po­ten­tial Sixth Man of the Year can­di­date, is el­i­gi­ble for a four-year ex­ten­sion worth up to $51.4 mil­lion. He will be­come a re­stricted free agent if the Kings don’t re-sign him by June 30.

Fox and Ba­gley will be el­i­gi­ble for ex­ten­sions in 2020 and 2021, re­spec­tively.

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