The Sacramento Kings have agreed to sign free agent forward Matt Barnes, as first reported by USA Today's Sam Amick. The contract is for two years and $12 million, and the second season is a player option, as first reported by CSN Bay Area's James Ham.
Barnes played for Kings coach Dave Joerger last season with the Memphis Grizzlies, and Joerger got emotional when talking about his veteran leadership after the injury-riddled team was eliminated by the San Antonio Spurs in the playoffs. Barnes is from the Sacramento area and played for the Kings for part of the 2004-05 season.
Sacramento wanted to add veterans in their locker room, as evidenced by the agreements to sign free agents Anthony Tolliver, Garrett Temple and Arron Afflalo. Barnes, 36, fits into that, too, but the addition also raises questions about the rest of the roster.
Barnes is a 3-and-D small forward who can fit on just about any team. The Kings, though, already have Rudy Gay, Omri Casspi and Caron Butler under contract. Gay and Casspi can play some power forward, but there's already a big of a frontcourt logjam. This signing does nothing to quiet rumors that Gay's tenure in Sacramento is nearly over.
As for the contract, it's a little surprising that Barnes didn't get more on the open market. At this stage of his career, though, there might not have been a ton of teams lining up to give him two years guaranteed. The Kings got good value, but some fans might have preferred them to use the roster spot on a young player with room to improve.