When the Hawks hired Nate McMillan to assist Lloyd Pierce, we knew the Atlanta coach was in trouble. If you are a head coach with rumors of your job being in question, the last thing you want to hear is that the team you are coaching hired an experienced coach as your new assistant. Then the Kings hired Alvin Gentry to assist Luke Walton. Guess what happened.
The Sacramento Kings fired coach Luke Walton on Sunday, sources told ESPN. Kings have lost seven of eight games and dropped to 6-11 on season – leaving them 12th in the Western Conference.— Adrian Wojnarowski (@wojespn) November 21, 2021
Sources: Alvin Gentry will become the Kings’ interim coach. Gentry is already under contract through 2022-2023, gets a raise to take interim job and agreement on some benchmarks of success rest of this season with team to try and keep job longer.— Adrian Wojnarowski (@wojespn) November 21, 2021
Ongoing ownership catastrophe
Walton’s performance with the Kings has been under question for a while. A lot of people expressed reservations about his coaching decisions, and the fact is that since he took over in April of 2019, Walton didn’t achieve anything noticeable with the Kings. But, the question is how much of that is on Walton. After all, he is the second most successful coach in Kings history.
Since moving to Sacramento, the main symptom of the Kings’ problem is that they have had 18 different coaches since 1985. Walton may not have been the best option as head coach, but there’s only one place to look to when a team is continuously horrible. Bill Simmons vented his frustration on Twitter and spoke of the elephant in the room.
Last 4 years: Sac took Bagley over Luka, spent lottery picks on THREE point guards, froze on trading Barnes when he had legit trade value, spent actual money on T. Thompson, gave Bogdanovic away for NOTHING… but hey let’s change coaches again. An ongoing ownership catastrophe.— Bill Simmons (@BillSimmons) November 21, 2021
Simmons is correct, and unfortunately for Kings fans, not much will change. The NBA is a business, and we all know the boss rarely fires himself. The worst part is, Sacramento is a great basketball city with amazing fans. They deserve better.
Simmons rarely tweets, and you’d suspect he’d do it for the Celtic, Patriots, or the Red Sox. For those of us old enough to remember Grantland (R.I.P.), it’s not surprising the Boston Sports Guy has a thing for the Kings. Grantland gave us one of the best insights into the impact a bad owner can have on draft night.
Stauskas spent only a year in Sacramento. They traded him to the 76ers, and he spent time with the Nets, Blazers, and Cavs before signing with Baskonia in ’19/’20. Stauskas is currently playing for the Grand Rapids Gold, the Nuggets G-League team, trying to get back to the NBA. Not a career you’d expect from a no.8 pick.
Everyone has hits and misses in a draft, but when you see the process behind the Kings picking Stauskas, then you understand how they made all the mistakes Simmons listed in his tweet. Sauce Castillo forever.