Kings exploring trades for Nemanja Bjelica

The Kings explored trades for Bjelica around the time of the November draft and will likely continue to do so as they begin to rebuild over the next two to four years with players who fit Fox’s timeline, a source said. The organization’s emphasis on developing younger players has temporarily, at least, eliminated the role of Bjelica, a 32-year-old power forward who had a career year for the Kings last season. – via Sacramento Bee

The Kings reduced Bjelica’s role as part of general manager Monte McNair’s plan to rebuild around De’Aaron Fox, the 23-year-old point guard who recently signed a five-year, $163 million contract extension, sources with knowledge of the situation told The Sacramento Bee. Bjelica was benched two weeks ago after some discussion about his playing time, sources said. – via Sacramento Bee

Sources told The Bee there is no personal issue for Bjelica, who traveled with the team to Los Angeles and was seen on the bench as the Kings suffered their fourth consecutive loss. Walton has tiptoed around the reasons for Bjelica’s absence while repeatedly making it clear the decision has nothing to do with the coaching staff’s belief in him as a player. – via Sacramento Bee

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