NBA Free Agency 2017: Rudy Gay leaves Sacramento to join the Spurs

DALLAS, TX - MARCH 03: Rudy Gay
DALLAS, TX - MARCH 03: Rudy Gay /

Rudy Gay dumps the Sacramento Kings and agrees to a contract with the San Antonio Spurs.  This article details Gay’s time with Sacramento and a reaction to the signing.

According to ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski, Rudy Gay agreed to a two-year contract for $17.2 million with the San Antonio Spurs.  Today, we take a look at Gay’s time with the Kings and then provide a reaction to this move.  Without further ado, let us jump right into it.

Rudy Gay as a King

Rudy Gay played three and a half fantastic seasons in Sacramento despite the team struggles.  He came to Sacramento in a December 2013 trade from the Toronto Raptors.  Looking back on the deal, Sacramento dominated this trade.

Gay played 223 games in a Kings uniform.  He averaged 19.3 points, 6.0 rebounds, 2.8 rebounds, 1.3 steals, 1.1 three-pointers made and 0.7 blocks per game while shooting 46.4% from the field and 83.3% from the foul line during his tenure in Sacramento.  Those are great numbers considering he played second fiddle to DeMarcus Cousins for most of that time and he had a down season in 2015-2016 when the Kings brought in Rajon Rondo to run the show.

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I am going to miss Rudy Gay playing for the Kings.  Gay is a necessary player in today’s NBA as he can guard multiple positions and do a little bit of everything on the offensive end.  He is truly a position-less player.  He was a valuable asset to Sacramento and will be missed.


I had mixed reactions to this move.  I was not at all surprised to see Rudy Gay sign elsewhere.  He declined a $14 million player option to test the free agent market.

When I first saw the contract figures, I was stunned he got so little money.  Players averaging 19 points a game do not grow on trees, especially wings that can guard the likes of LeBron James and Kevin Durant.

Two things probably played major factors in the contract being so light on dollar figures.  One, the San Antonio Spurs have minimal cap space to work with and plan on contending.  They have to fill out a roster needing seven players and have little funds, so they are required to spend wisely.  Two, Rudy Gay’s Achilles injury had to play a factor.  That injury can be career-ending and he tore his Achilles in mid-January meaning he may not be ready to play on opening night.  Reports say he will be ready for training camp, but we are still months away from that.  Setbacks and slower progressions do happen, so stay tuned.

I believe the San Antonio Spurs got a steal in Rudy Gay.  Even if he misses the first few months of the season and cannot fully return to health, Gay should pay dividends on his $17.2 million over two seasons.  Nice work Spurs, you have improved your exceptional roster once again.

Final Thoughts

There you have it, Rudy Gay is headed to San Antonio to play for the Spurs.  I wish Rudy Gay nothing but the best in both his recovery and career.  It was devastating to watch him go down with that injury.  I hope he erases those memories and adds some new playoff heroic ones to my memory banks.

Next: Sacramento Kings projected 2017-2018 depth chart

A Royal Pain has you covered this offseason with all the Sacramento Kings content you desire.  We have a ton of draft and free agency pieces up on the site for your pleasure.  We will also be covering the summer league and all those juicy rumors, so please check back with us often.  Thank you for reading.