Andrew Bogut on NBA retirement and long-term ownership opportunity with Sydney Kings
Andrew Bogut has decided to return home to play professionally for a number of reasons.
The first ever Australian number one NBA draft pick has already made his mark on the national sporting landscape, arguably in a way basketball has never before.
"I can't remember the last time the NBL had a breaking story on Channel Nine and Fox Sports with 10-15 minutes (coverage)," Bogut said on SEN's afternoon program.
Bogut, a Victorian local was swayed by his birthplace's direct rivals Sydney who converted the former NBA Champion to sign with the Kings - something he also nearly achieved in 2012 during the NBA lockout.
The Kings' professionalism was a leading factor, among others, which allowed the number six to be sublimated on the purple and gold uniform.
"The Kings put together a more than professional proposal," Bogut explained during his official announcement.
"This was a world-class, NBA level negotiation.
"I've been in a room with the best GMs and owners in the world... this was a world-class handling of this negotiation."
Bogut specifically announced at the beginning of his announcement that the new two-year deal signed with the Kings had no out clauses - he is here for the long-haul.
With that, he also announced his retirement from the NBA.
“There is no NBA outs in my deal, there are no European outs. I’m committed to being here for two years. That will retire me from the NBA.”
In addition, Bogut's contract includes a 10% share in the Sydney Kings, with the option of purchasing up to 50% of the organisation at the conclusion of his contract.
This has been something Bogut has been interested in for a long time; having an invested interest in an organisation within the local basketball game.
"I want some skin in the game, I want to see how viable this is and see where it's going," he said (via the Daily Telegraph).
"If it goes as well as I think it will there is no reason why I won't put my own money in as well."
With the future in mind, Bogut was clear that he felt he would be a valuable part of the (re)building organisation. Funnily, he explained part of his decision not to join hometown Melbourne United was that he would not want to be viewed in the same light as Kevin Durant, who famously joined the Golden State Warriors after they successfully claimed an NBA championship.
The scars of yesteryear when there was no Sydney-based franchise in the national basketball landscape, has continued to play a part in the Kings' slowly but surely growing resurgence, which is sure to see a major boost with this announcement.
“It’s a very exciting time, it’s a very good roster," Bogut explained.
"There’s a few more tweaks that we can make, but it all comes down to us playing together.
"You can have a team of individuals that are very talented but they won’t get far. So that’s where I come in. I’m not only here to get points and rebounds, but I’m here to get this this back culturally and having guys buy in and play for each other.”
Bogut did however, not make mention of wanting to win championships, but rather games in a Kings uniform.
With that said, the pressure of Bogut, head coach Andrew Gaze and the Kings franchise is now well and truly at the highest level, making the team =favourites to win the NBL championship.