The Sacramento Kings, in need of a small forward, attempted to sign free agent Andre Iguodala during the 2013 offseason. But the contract offer, with ink still drying, was yanked off the table and the former Arizona Wildcat ended up signing with the Golden State Warriors.
That left the Kings with John Salmons as their starting small forward, a move that didn’t last long as just weeks into the season, Sacramento packaged Salmons along with a handful of players and sent them to Toronto in exchange for Rudy Gay.
Struggling with the Raptors, Gay received a breath of fresh air in Sacramento and played extremely well with the Kings. Might that have been attributed to the change of scenery? Possible, but it’s within reason to believe the fit with Sacramento was beneficial to Gay’s game along with other members of the Kings, something general manager Pete D’Alessandro spoke about during his Reddit AMA.
“Rudy was someone early on who we identified as being a good fit for our team and specifically alongside DeMarcus. In general trades develop over time and there is an early conversation which leads to subsequent talks. Many times the first conversation may appear to be a dead-end but then ultimately becomes a trade. The Rudy Gay trade followed a similar path.”
The Kings have stated that the move to acquire Gay wasn’t a rental, so hopefully the two sides will be able to find a middle ground moving forward, assuming Gay does opt out of the final year of his contract.