First Harry Giles, now Alex Len.
The Kings have lost a second center this offseason with the report that Len is joining the Toronto Raptors on a two-year deal in free agency. Len is in competition to be the starter at the five for Toronto along with Chris Boucher and Aron Baynes after Serge Ibaka and Marc Gasol both left for the Los Angeles teams this offseason.
Len was a backup for the Kings, but filled an important role as a defensive stopper in the second unit after his arrival prior to the trade deadline. He was less impactful in the bubble while recovering from COVID-19. However, it seemed he could have been a useful piece for the Kings in 2020-21 to complement Richaun Holmes at the five.
At that price (the deal is projected to be for the minimum), Sacramento should have been interested. Even if the focus is on developing younger players, Len could have been a veteran mentor and one of the few good defenders on this roster to impart defensive habits.
What this suggests is that the Kings have a lot of faith in Marvin Bagley as a part-time center, or that the interest in Hassan Whiteside is going to lead to a contract. Holmes can’t handle 48 minutes at the center spot, and Nemanja Bjelica is more of a matchup-specific five than an option every night. That means Bagley will have to step up.
Sacramento has been startlingly quiet since the start of free agency. They haven’t signed any players other than their three rookies and have watched Len, Kent Bazemore, and Giles leave, along with probably Bogdan Bogdanovic. Perhaps the failed sign-and-trade has the young front office gun shy, but some reinforcements will have to be added to fill out this roster, even if another developmental season is on the horizon.