Kings Sign Papagiannis, Richardson and Labissiere
SACRAMENTO, CA - The Sacramento Kings signed center Georgios Papagiannis (YOUR-gos Pa-pa-YAHN-iss), guard Malachi Richardson (Mal-ah-kai) and forward-center Skal Labissiere (Skal La-bee-SEE-AIR) to contracts, according to Kings Vice President and General Manager Vlade Divac.
On June 23, the night of the 2016 NBA Draft, Sacramento acquired the draft rights of Papagiannis and Labissiere and the rights to Bogdan Bogdanovic (boag-DAHN boag-DAHN-O-vitch) and a future second-round selection from the Phoenix Suns in exchange for the draft rights to Marquese Chriss, who the Kings selected out of Washington with the eighth overall pick. The Suns selected Papagiannis (13th overall) and Labissiere (28th overall) in the first round before trading their draft rights to the Kings.
Papagiannis, who became the highest drafted Greek player ever, played for Panathinaikos (Greece) for four seasons (2011-12 – 2012-13 and 2014-15 - 2015-16). In 2015-16, the 7-foot-1 center averaged 6.4 points (.678 FG%, .667 FT%), 2.6 rebounds and 11.4 minutes per game in 21 contests. He played high school basketball in the United States at Westtown School in West Chester, Penn., in 2013-14, before returning to Greece.
Labissiere, a 6-foot-11 forward-center, posted averages of 6.6 points (.516 FG%, .661 FT%), 3.1 rebounds, 1.6 blocks and 15.8 minutes per game in all 36 games while starting 18 of them for the 2015-16 Kentucky Wildcats. He became the highest drafted Haitian player since Samuel Dalembert, who was selected 26th overall in the 2001 NBA Draft.
On July 7, the Kings acquired the draft rights of Richardson from the Charlotte Hornets in exchange for forward Marco Belinelli. The 6-foot-6 Richardson was selected by the Hornets in the first round (22nd overall) of the 2016 NBA Draft. Richardson averaged 13.4 points (.369 FG%, .353 3pt%, .720 FT%), 4.3 rebounds, 2.1 assists, 1.2 steals and 34.4 minutes per game in starting all 37 games in which he played in as a freshman at Syracuse. An ACC All-Freshman team selection, Richardson finished with 79 three-pointers, the third-best total by an Orangeman freshman.