ESPN’s Marc Stein reported just minutes ago that the Sacramento Kings have offered Portland Trail Blazers free agent guard Wes Matthews a 3-year contract in the ‘$45 million range’, but Matthews would still prefer a deal with the Dallas Mavericks.
ESPN sources say that the Sacramento Kings have offered Wes Matthews a three-year deal in the $45 million range— Marc Stein (@ESPNSteinLine) July 3, 2015
But ESPN sources say Dallas is Wes Matthews' preferred destination -- over both Kings and Raptors -- and that Mavs are favorites to land him— Marc Stein (@ESPNSteinLine) July 3, 2015
I see this going one of a few different ways.
Matthews could be using the Kings and their cap room to squeeze more out of the Mavericks, a team currently focusing on their pursuit of Los Angeles Clippers free agent center DeAndre Jordan. It’s also possible that he’s waiting to see if the Mavericks can land Jordan, because if they can’t, you can argue that the Sacramento Kings roster is closer to a playoff seed than the Mavericks.
It’s also possible, and I’d say more likely, Matthews is using his interest in Dallas as a way to negotiate more out of Vlade Divac and the Sacramento Kings. Matthews could be looking for a fourth year, more money, or both.
It’s worth noting that the tax rate in Dallas is a lot lower than Sacramento. The Kings are going to have to offer Matthews more money on that alone. Add in the dysfunctional franchise tax, and, well, Matthews is going to be pricey.
We all knew the Kings were going to have to overpay to land Matthews, and despite whatever agent and media posturing is going on behind the scenes, I think the Kings can land this guy if they give him what he wants.