NBA Rumors: Rivals Eye Richaun Holmes as Buyout Candidate If Kings Can't Trade Center

Rob Goldberg@@TheRobGoldbergFeatured Columnist IVJanuary 24, 2023

SACRAMENTO, CA - DECEMBER 30: Richaun Holmes #22 of the Sacramento Kings celebrates during the game against the Utah Jazz on December 30, 2022 at Golden 1 Center in Sacramento, California. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images Agreement. Mandatory Copyright Notice: Copyright 2022 NBAE (Photo by Rocky Widner/NBAE via Getty Images)
Rocky Widner/NBAE via Getty Images

There will be a market for veteran center Richaun Holmes if he becomes available after a buyout, according to NBA reporter Marc Stein.

Rival teams are reportedly monitoring 29-year-old in case the Sacramento Kings are unable to trade him before the Feb. 9 deadline.

Jake Fischer of Yahoo Sports reported Holmes is available for a trade even though the Kings have surged to third in the Western Conference with a 27-19 record. The center has fallen out of Sacramento's rotation this year, averaging only 3.4 points and 2.3 rebounds in 9.6 minutes per game.

Two-time All-Star Domantas Sabonis has taken over at center, while Chimezie Metu has earned a bigger role this season.

It's a major change for Holmes, who broke out in 2020-21 while averaging 14.2 points, 8.3 rebounds and 1.6 blocks per game. He started all 61 games he played that year and led the team with 6.1 win shares, per Basketball Reference.

The Kings rewarded Holmes with a four-year, $46.5 million extension, but that contract could make him difficult to trade. Opposing teams clearly still have interest in adding the center, but there may be more demand if he agrees to a buyout.