Rumors are again swirling of a possible coaching change in Sacramento, but firing George Karl now might not be the Kings‘ best move, contends Sam Amick of USA Today. The columnist warns that an immediate change could make it difficult for the team to conduct a thorough search for Karl’s replacement. He adds that Sacramento has been looking at former Thunder coach Scott Brooks, ex-Bulls mentor Tom Thibodeau and former Warriors coach Mark Jackson for a while.
There’s more news from the Pacific Division:
- The Kings should get rid of Karl right away because they have barely improved despite raising their talent level, argues Tom Ziller of SB Nation. Sacramento is just 21-29 and falling out of the playoff picture even though it signed Rajon Rondo, Marco Belinelli and Caron Butler in free agency and drafted Willie Cauley-Stein sixth overall. Ziller also slams Karl for trying to get rid of DeMarcus Cousins, for having an up-tempo game plan that doesn’t fit the team’s talent and for having a poor defensive team.
- Clippers coach Doc Rivers didn’t waste words when asked about Blake Griffin‘s future in L.A., tweets Ben Bolch of The Los Angeles Times. “Blake’s ours,” Rivers said, “and he’s going to stay ours.” There have been rumors that the Clippers may consider dealing Griffin in the wake of an incident with an equipment manager that the team reportedly believes could keep him out of action for two months.
- Lakers coach Byron Scott has been trying to make rookie D’Angelo Russell feel like he’s earning his minutes, according to Bill Oram of The Orange County Register. In what he says was an effort to keep Russell’s ego under control, Scott pulled him and Julius Randle from the starting lineup on December 7th. “I didn’t want him to just feel, ‘This is who I am. I should be starting on the Lakers because I’m the second pick,’” Scott said. “No, you’re starting because you work hard and you earn it.”