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Sacramento Kings Rumors: Andrei Kirilenko Unlikely To Return To NBA Next Season

The Sacramento Kings were once linked to forward Andrei Kirilenko last offseason, but after some debate he elected to remain in Russia to play his professional ball. There had been some talk of the Kings making a play at Kirilenko once again to try and solidify their roster, but that does not seem to be the case if this report is any indication of where the two sides stand.

Here's the latest from Sactown Royalty.

In a recent interview with Russian website Isvetia, Andrei Kirilenko did not seem to be very committed to coming back to the NBA. He mentioned that it was very possible that he could return to CSKA Moscow, and that he would like to make a decision by August 1st. Kirilenko also says that his agent has not contacted any NBA team. [...]

In another report, Kings swingman Francisco Garcia told Kirilenko that he wants him to come to Sacramento after Russia's Olympic Qualifier win over Cisco's Dominican Republic team. Kirilenko replied "Let's wait until the 11th". Kirilenko does not need to wait until the 11th to make up his mind on whether or not he wants to come back. If he is waiting as part of a strategy to increase his price, the Kings should not be waiting for him.

While the Kings do have a pretty sizable void as far as a legitimate starting small forward goes, they do have quite a bit of money tied up to John Salmons. Kirilenko would likely be an improvement over Salmons, but not so much that Sacramento can just shovel a ton of money his way and expect him to turn the team around.

For even more on the Kings and their free agency plans, check out Sactown Royalty.