Coaching Rumors: Suns, Wizards, Pistons, Kings

We're about a quarter of the way through the NBA regular season, which is enough of a sample size that we can say certain teams have underperformed so far. Sam Amick and Jeff Zillgitt of USA Today take a look at the coaching situations for a few of those teams in their latest piece, examining whether any head coaches are in danger of being let go. We touched on Dwane Casey's situation with the Raptors in a post this morning, but here are the rest of Amick's and Zillgitt's updates:

  • After Suns owner Robert Sarver told's Chris Broussard yesterday that Alvin Gentry wasn't on the hot seat, Amick and Zillgitt spoke to Sarver as well. Sarver's vote of confidence in this case was even stronger, as he told USA Today that Gentry's job is safe for the rest of the season.
  • Like the Raptors, the Suns may explore an on-court change rather than a coaching move, with Michael Beasley a candidate to be involved — according to USA Today, there's some disagreement between the team and player about what his role should be. However, Sarver still hopes Beasley will work things out in Phoenix: "We're working with him. He's working hard, and we still expect to be able to (salvage the situation)."
  • The Wizards are still paying their last head coach, Flip Saunders, so they're unlikely to replace Randy Wittman this year, since it would mean paying three different coaches.
  • Pistons owner Tom Gores has high expectations for his club, and wants to see some progress toward the playoffs this year in Detroit, making it a potential make-or-break season for Lawrence Frank.
  • Keith Smart's job with the Kings appears safe, though team president Geoff Petrie's future isn't quite so clear.
  • The Nets still have faith in Avery Johnson and expect some peaks and valleys with the team's overhauled roster. However, there's an expectation that the team will not only qualify for the postseason but be in position to "make an impact once they get there."
  • Despite a slow start for the Pacers, there's still hope in Indiana that Frank Vogel is around to coach the team for years to come.

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