Sacramento Kings fire head coach Mike Malone
The Sacramento Kings have fired head coach Mike Malone according to a report from Yahoo Sports last night. The Kings lost their seventh of out nine games without center DeMarcus Cousins on Sunday, leading to Malone’s firing, but sources say there was a range of disagreements leading to Malone’s departure.
Kings assistant and ex-Utah Jazz head coach Ty Corbin will fill the interim head coaching role in the meantime.
Owner Vivek Ranadive and Kings ownership reportedly experienced consistent tension with Malone, not just in terms of how the team should be playing, but also reportedly in the case of an alleged deal for Detroit Pistons forward Josh Smith. Apparently Malone expressed his disagreement with such a deal, which ownership had been pursuing since around July.
Malone had three years guaranteed on a $9.4 million contract and a team option on the 2016-17 season.
Rumblings are that the Kings will pursue NBA head coaching veteran George Karl.
Malone showed a passion and intensity on the sidelines that appeared highly contributive to the impressive 9-6 start to the Kings season. Ownership is adamant about their expectations for this Kings team competing for a playoff spot this season, and maybe they jumped the gun in thinking they could bring in more of an NBA-savvy head coach like Karl. DeMarcus Cousins would be the draw for someone like Karl or another proven coach to explore the position.