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Kings fire Luke Walton after 6-11 start to season, tab Alvin Gentry as interim head coach, per reports

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The Sacramento Kings have fired head coach Luke Walton after two-plus frustrating seasons, according to Adrian Wojnarowski of ESPN. Walton, who took over in 2019, was 68-93 during his time in charge. Assistant coach Alvin Gentry will take over as interim head coach, per Wojnarowski

There have been whispers about Walton’s future since last season, and they only ramped up after the Kings’ disappointing start to this campaign. Earlier this month, a report from The Athletic indicated that Walton was in danger of losing his job if he couldn’t turn things around. 

Instead, they only got worse. The Kings have lost their last three games, and seven of their last eight outings to fall to 6-11 on the season, which has them in 12th place in the Western Conference. The most recent defeat, a 123-105 capitulation to the Utah Jazz on Saturday night, featured a fan puking on the court in a fitting bit of symbolism. With that, Walton was done. 

“One thing that’s really helped us is (that) we have a very, very clear goal,” Kings general manager Monte McNair told The Athletic. “We want to get this organization back to the playoffs. We want to get back there, (and) that helps (that) we have a singular focus.”

The Kings have not made the postseason since 2006 — the longest drought in the league — and despite a stream of lottery picks they haven’t made any significant progress on that goal. Walton was the 10th head coach that they’ve hired since their last playoff appearance, and now they’ll have to start over once again. While there are examples of mid-season coaching changes revitalizing teams, this is in danger of becoming another lost season for the Kings. 

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In addition to the coaching issue, there are also concerns with the roster, not least of which is De’Aaron Fox’s slow start to the season. He’s looked nothing like a franchise player so far, averaging 19.7 points and 5.8 assists on 41.9 percent shooting from the field and 24.3 percent from 3-point land. His numbers are down across the board, and the Kings simply don’t have the depth or talent to make up for his lack of production. 

There’s also the Marvin Bagley III situation, which has been hanging over the team for some time now, and epitomizes their recent failures. He was the No. 2 overall pick in 2018, taken ahead of Luka Doncic and Trae Young, but has played just 122 games during a frustrating three-plus seasons. He’s currently out of the rotation, his agent is publicly feuding with the franchise and the Kings are in danger of losing him for nothing in free agency next summer. 

While there are some interesting players on this team, including young guards like Tyrese Haliburton and Davion Mitchell, Gentry — and whoever takes over as head coach long term — face a long road ahead. 

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Kyle Busch detained last month in Mexico for gun possession

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Kyle Busch said he forgot he had a gun in his bag while traveling in Mexico last month and was detained by Mexican authorities.



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Nets Coach Shares His Message To Team After Kyrie Irving Trade

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(Photo by Michael Reaves/Getty Images)

 

After three years and change, the Kyrie Irving experiment is over for the Brooklyn Nets, and many of their fans are breathing a sigh of relief.

They thought the organization had assembled a superteam back in 2019 when they acquired both Irving and Kevin Durant, but they have nothing to show for it, as the team didn’t reach the Eastern Conference Finals with the duo.

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Nets head coach Jacque Vaughn had a succinct message for his team after Irving was traded to the Dallas Mavericks following a trade request on Friday.

When Irving and Durant joined the Nets, many proclaimed them the NBA’s next great team, but the experiment failed for multiple seasons, and Irving is a major reason why.

He is an ultra-skilled player, but he has been a headache off the court.

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Earlier this season, he promoted a documentary with antisemitic content, and he failed to explain why he did so to reporters, which resulted in an eight-game suspension for him.

Last season, his failure to get vaccinated against COVID-19 caused the Nets to send him home for much of the year, and in the meantime, he promoted anti-vaccine conspiracy theories.

Now, the question is whether Durant will ask to be traded soon, as Brooklyn likely won’t even come close to contending for an NBA championship anytime soon.

Reportedly, there are teams that are monitoring Durant’s situation and readying themselves in case he asks out.

At least now the Nets can move forward without the stress of keeping Irving engaged and wondering what he may do next to jeopardize team chemistry and performance.

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The post Nets Coach Shares His Message To Team After Kyrie Irving Trade appeared first on The Cold Wire.





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Eagles' Jalen Hurts on Super Bowl LVII being the first to feature two black starting Quarterbacks

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Philadelphia Eagles’ Jalen Hurts on Super Bowl LVII being the first to feature two black starting Quarterbacks.



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