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Latest On Kings Coaching Search

THURSDAY, 5:34pm: McMillan intends to wait until the Pacers’ playoff run is over before interviewing for the Kings’ post, Sam Amick of USA Today tweets.

6:50pm: There has been no official contact yet, but the Kings are also interested in former Nuggets coach Brian Shaw, reports Sam Amick of USA Today (Twitter links). The interest is mutual, Amick says.

WEDNESDAY, 10:19am: Warriors assistant coach Luke Walton and Kings GM Vlade Divac are expected to meet to discuss Sacramento’s head coaching vacancy, likely after Golden State’s first-round playoff series with Houston, according to Ailene Voisin of The Sacramento Bee. Walton is “extremely fond” of Divac, who was briefly his Lakers teammate, and the location of Sacramento is increasingly appealing to Walton, who is fond of life in Northern California and has several close relatives in the Sacramento area, Voisin writes. Warriors head coach Steve Kerr said Monday that no team had asked permission to interview his top assistant, but Voisin reported Tuesday that Walton was among the coaches to whom the Kings had reached out.

Divac is especially interested in Walton, Spurs assistant Ettore Messina and NBA coaching veterans Tom Thibodeau and Scott Brooks, but he’s planned to speak with several others. Divac is inquiring about the interest of Monty Williams, Jeff Van Gundy, Spurs assistant Ime Udoka and at least two college coaches, among other names previously reported as Kings coaching targets, Voisin relays. The Kings are poised to interview Sam Mitchell, Vinny Del Negro and Mike Woodson, according to reports. Mitchell’s interview is to take place today, a source told The Bee’s Jason Jones.

Sacramento has natural appeal to Brooks, who’s from the nearby city of French Camp, California, but Adrian Wojnarowski of The Vertical reported last week that he’s not interested in coaching the Kings, with the Wizards apparently the front-runner for the former Thunder head coach. Thibodeau and Van Gundy, apparent co-favorites for the Timberwolves job, don’t want to coach Sacramento either, according to Wojnarowski.

The Kings have reached out to Messina, as Voisin reported previously, though Messina and fellow Spurs assistant Udoka are busy with the playoffs. Both were reportedly candidates for the Nets vacancy, with Udoka the apparent front-runner at one point before the job instead went to Hawks assistant Kenny Atkinson, who also reportedly drew interest from the Kings.

Williams is a Thunder assistant but has been away from the team since his wife died in February. He won’t rejoin the team for the playoffs and, as The Oklahoman’s Anthony Slater hears, he’s not expected to return to Oklahoma City for next season, either. Top free agent Kevin Durant has a close bond with Williams, the former Pelicans head coach.

Kevin McHale, Mark Jackson, David Blatt, Jeff Hornacek, Patrick Ewing, Nate McMillan and Celtics assistant Jay Larranaga are the other candidates in whom the Kings are reportedly interested. Sources who spoke with Marc Stein of have speculated that Heat assistant David Fizdale and former Cavs and Lakers coach Mike Brown could become Kings candidates as well.

Which of the many names mentioned here do you like best for the Kings? Leave a comment to share your thoughts.

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13 thoughts on “Latest On Kings Coaching Search

  1. I’d like to see what Patrick Ewing or Kevin McHale could do to help Demarcus Cousins become a leader — or at least more focused player. Those are two guys who are very familiar with how big-man-centered teams operate best, and since the Kings seem intent on keeping Cousins around, Ewing and McHale might be solid fits. Ewing has gotten heavy endorsements among current league coaches, so he may be a good choice for a developing team.

  2. Walton, Messina, or udoka would be good choices. All are from solid organizations and thought from some of the best. But Messina would be my choice out of the three because his European background

  3. sherwin

    Mark Jackson, Jeff Van Gundy, Patrick Ewing, or Walton

  4. 1. Walton: son of legendary player that has been around basketball his whole life. Understands that basketball is a team game that hinges on movement by players and the ball. Won his first 24 games as a head coach. Comes from perhaps the best team in professional sports that is redefining the game.

    2. Jackson: preaches defense and togetherness. Will stand up to boogie and require more from everyone. He is a transformationalist that uses vision and charisma to get more from others. Played the game at a high level. Has presumably learned from mistakes in Golden State. Will get them to play together and changed culture of the warriors forever.

  5. How about Kings Assistant John Welch?

  6. Jeremy

    Any coach who comes needs to be careful. That front office not the smartest.

  7. Jeremy

    Be careful with shaw dude lost the respect of his team with the biggest so who to say it won’t happen again

    • Jeremy


  8. Dana Gauruder

    Priority one is to find a coach that Cousins will respect. Won’t be easy.

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