The Kings on Sunday signed guard Keon Ellis and 2023 NBA Draft pick Jalen Slawson to two-way contracts, utilizing a pair of the three two-way roster spots now permitted under the league's new collective bargaining agreement.
Ellis played for the Kings last season on a two-way deal, and the 6-foot-6 guard appeared in 16 games for Sacramento. In 4.4 minutes per game, he averaged 1.5 points, 0.5 rebounds and 0.4 assists. Ellis started 23 games for Sacramento's G League affiliate Stockton Kings, however, averaging 16.8 points on an admirable 51.7-percent shooting from the field and 44.4 percent from 3-point range, with 5.3 rebounds, 3.4 assists and 1.6 steals.
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Slawson, drafted No. 54 overall by the Kings in June, averaged 15.6 points on 55.5-percent shooting with 7.1 rebounds, 3.2 assists and 1.5 steals at Furman in 2022-23. Along with Ellis, Slawson is part of Sacramento's summer league roster, with their first game set for 7 p.m. Monday against the Golden State Warriors at Golden 1 Center.
The Kings have yet to announce a decision for their third and final two-way spot. As a refresher, a two-way contract doesn't count against the 15-player roster of standard NBA deals but allows those on two-way deals, who must have fewer than four years of NBA experience, to play G-League games and up to 50 NBA games.
Last season, Ellis and Neemias Queta took up the Kings' two-way contracts. Queta still has one remaining year of two-way eligibility, though he is a restricted free agent after Sacramento extended him a qualifying offer last week, The Sacramento Bee's Jason Anderson reported Thursday, citing a league source.
Queta also is on the Kings' summer league roster and certainly will look to prove himself worthy of one of Sacramento's two remaining roster spots.
In 20 games over two seasons with Sacramento, Queta averaged 2.9 points, 2.2 rebounds and 0.4 blocks in 5.8 minutes per game. His 16.8 points on 68-percent shooting from the field, 8.8 rebounds and 2.5 assists across 29 games with Stockton helped him earn runner-up for the G League MVP award.
It remains to be seen what the Kings do with their new additional two-way contract, and they could wait until after summer league so that they have more time to evaluate their options.