Reports: Sacramento Kings sign-and-trade Isaiah Thomas to Phoenix Suns

by Jonathan Santiago and James Ham

Isaiah Thomas against the Phoenix Suns. (Photo: Tobin Halsey)

Isaiah Thomas is apparently headed to a Pacific Division rival.  According to multiple reports, the Sacramento Kings will sign and trade the 25-year-old point guard to the Phoenix Suns.  Thomas and the Suns have agreed to a four-year, $27-million deal that the Kings are apparently declining to match.

Thank you (to the Sacramento Kings) organization for giving me a chance,” Thomas said in a statement released on Twitter,” It’s been a great (three years) and I wouldn’t change that for nothing.  And (to) the fans of Sacramento, (words) can’t explain what y’all mean to me!  Y’all made me who I am in the NBA and I can’t thank you guys enough.  Sacramento will always have a place in my heart!

In return for Thomas, the Kings are acquiring the draft rights to Alex Oriakhi and a $7.2-million trade exception.  The 24-year-old forward was selected with the 57th overall pick in the 2013 NBA Draft, but has spent the last two seasons playing overseas and in the D-League.

Thomas spent the last two days being courted by the Suns.  He drew interest as a restricted free agent from multiple teams, including the Dallas Mavericks and Los Angeles Lakers.

Thomas was selected with the last pick in the 2011 NBA Draft.  The 5’9 point guard out of Washington has improved in each of his three seasons in the league.  Last year, he averaged a career-high 20.3 points and 6.3 assists per game while shooting 45.3 percent from the field.

A breakup between the Kings and Thomas became more apparent as the new 2014-15 NBA calendar opened up on July 1.  Some within the organization had felt Thomas was better suited as a backup while the 25-year-old point guard has fashioned himself as a starter.  The Kings were also unwilling to go over the tax threshold of $76.8 million to re-sign Thomas.

“Sacramento will always have a place in my heart!,” Thomas also tweeted.  “Thanks (to Sacramento Mayor) Kevin Johnson for) being by my side since day 1,” Thomas also tweeted. “Learned a lot from you & the city.”

Yahoo! Sports was first report the sign-and-trade agreement between the Kings and Suns.

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