Kings Coaching Rumors: Mullin, Jent, Malone

The Kings’ head coaching job appears to be George Karl‘s if he wants it, and it seems like he does. Still, the job would be Chris Mullin‘s if he wanted to take it, an opposing GM tells Adrian Wojnarowski of Yahoo! Sports (Twitter link), and Mullin is indeed a possibility, tweets Jason Jones of The Sacramento Bee. Tyrone Corbin is expected to take the job on an interim basis once the Kings make their decision to fire Michael Malone official. Here’s more on a time of uncertainty in California’s capital:

5:28pm update:

  • Ranadive finds the prospect of Mullin coaching the team “very intriguing,” sources tell Wojnarowski (Twitter link).

4:48pm update:

  • It was a mutual parting of ways for Jent and the Kings, D’Alessandro told reporters, including Jones (Twitter link).

4:06pm updates:

  • Jent won’t be on the staff going forward, Corbin confirmed to reporters, as Jason Jones of The Sacramento Bee notes (on Twitter).
  • Cousins said the news of Malone’s departure, which he heard via Twitter, evoked an emotional reaction among the players and called the day’s rainy weather a fitting backdrop, as Amick and Jones relay (Twitter links).

4:00pm updates:

  • DeMarcus Cousins said the Kings didn’t consult him about the apparent coaching change, but he trusts the team to work it all out, as he told reporters today, including USA Today’s Sam Amick (Twitter link).
  • The Kings and assistant coach Chris Jent are expected to part ways, tweets Marc Stein of ESPN.com, who indicates that the team plans to make its decision to fire Malone official on Tuesday.
  • Sacramento’s front office didn’t believe Jent, who served last season as the team’s top assistant, was the right man for the job, so they interviewed Alvin Gentry and Kurt Rambis for the position, as Adrian Wojnarowski of Yahoo! Sports writes in a full piece. Malone suspected at the time that the team was trying to hire his successor, and so he pursued Corbin, who landed the assistant coaching job and has been loyal to Malone. Gentry was uncomfortable with the notion that the Kings were setting him up as a head-coach-in-waiting, sources tell Grantland’s Zach Lowe, who says the Kings deny that they had that in mind.
  • There’s more than $4MM that Malone is still to receive under the terms of his contract with the Kings, Wojnarowski writes in the same piece.
  • The falling out between Malone and Kings management began late last season when Malone wanted the team to add a point guard and the front office instead signed Royce White to a pair of 10-day contracts and pushed Malone to play him, as Wojnarowski details.
  • GM Pete D’Alessandro was merely the messenger in many cases as he passed along orders from Ranadive that Malone didn’t like, though D’Alessandro and Malone never formed any mutual trust, according to Wojnarowski.
  • People around the team believe the Kings were waiting for an opportunity to fire Malone and used the team’s struggles of late as an excuse to do so, in spite of the absence of Cousins during the team’s 2-7 stretch over the last nine games, Wojnarowski hears.
  • The presence of Malone was a major reason why Rudy Gay signed his three-year extension with the team last month, Wojnarowski also writes.

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