Word at the All-Star Game last weekend was that the Sacramento Kings were unlikely to make a trade prior to Thursday’s noon trade deadline due to the uncertainty over the future of the franchise.
That word, however, was mistaken as the Kings today made a rather big move, trading 2012 first-round draft pick Thomas Robinson and two other players to Houston as part of a three-team deal.
SI.com has details and notes the trade saves the Kings about $4 million (though with much of the season already gone, that works out to about $1.3 million for the rest of the year as Kevin Pelton of ESPN.com noted.) The Kings are also getting $1 million, so this may have been something of a cash dump. With the team’s ownership in flux, it’s hard to know who is calling the shots for the Kings. UPDATE, 9 p.m.: Here’s the official release on the trade.
The Big Lead, for one, sharply panned the trade. CBSSports.com also raised an eyebrow, as did a Sacramento Kings blog, while USA Today seemed to judge it more kindly. But with so much uncertainty surrounding the franchise, it seems hard to know how to assess the motivation for any moves the Kings make right now.
UPDATE, 6:30 — Adrian Wojnarowksi of Yahoo.com just Tweeted that the Seattle ownership group was briefed on the deal before it was made:
The Seattle ownership group, which has a deal to purchase the Sacramento Kings, was briefed on trade before its completion, source tells Y!
— Adrian Wojnarowski (@WojYahooNBA) February 21, 2013