Last summer, the Sacramento Kings signed Richaun Holmes to a two-year, $10 million contract, and it’s turned out to be one of the best bargain contracts in the NBA.
Per 36 minutes, Holmes has averaged 16 points on 65.4% shooting from the field, 10.4 rebounds, 1.8 blocks and 1.2 steals per game. The only other player that has matched those averages Per 36 minutes this season is Mason Plumlee, and he’s making $10 million more than Holmes is making this season.
Additionally, the Kings are 5.4 points per 100 possessions better with Holmes on the floor, which puts him in the 83rd percentile among players in the NBA in terms point differential, according to Cleaning the Glass. In layman’s terms, he’s been really, really good for Sacramento, and it sounds like Sacramento has been good for him too.
“I absolutely love Sacramento,” Holmes told NBC Sports California. “This community, this city, these fans — have shown me, in my short time here, that I really couldn’t see myself playing anywhere else. I would love to play here the rest of my career. I love to play in front of these fans, be a part of this community — this is a great place to be and I’d love just to be a part of it.”
Holmes is 26 years old. By the time he enters unrestricted free agency next summer, he’ll be 27 years old, which means that he’ll likely be looking to cash in on a long-term, big-money contract for the first time in his career.
While Sacramento can technically be the team to offer Holmes that contract because they’ll have his bird rights in 2021, they’re projected to have a ton of money committed to De’Aaron Fox and Bogdan Bogdanovic — both of whom are due new contracts this summer — in addition to the $44.6 million they’ve already committed to Harrison Barnes and Buddy Hield. That’s not to mention Marvin Bagley III, who will be up for a new contract the same time Holmes is.
Obviously things are bound to change between now and then, but the general point is that whether or not Holmes is a King for life will depend on how deep Vivek Ranadive is willing to go into his pockets, which will depend on how close he believes this time is to title contention a year from now.
Still, whether or not it happens, it’s cool that Holmes has made such a strong connection with Sacramento in such a short amount of time. As long as he continues to produce at a high level, Kings fans will surely love him back.