Odds on Next Sacramento Kings Head Coach After Luke Walton Fired – Kenny Atkinson and Terry Stotts Favorites

Alvin Gentry

Apr 12, 2021; New Orleans, Louisiana, USA; Sacramento Kings head coach Luke Walton and assistant head coach Alvin Gentry react to a play against New Orleans Pelicans during the first half at Smoothie King Center. Mandatory Credit: Stephen Lew-USA TODAY Sports

Alvin Gentry, Kenny Atkinson and Terry Stotts are the favorites to replace Luke Walton as Kings head coach
Sacramento is 6-11 and 12th in the Western Conference
Who’s the best bet to replace Walton? See analysis on the upcoming search here

Luke Walton’s tenure with the Sacramento Kings has finally come to an end. General manager Monte McNair fired Walton after a 6-11 start to the campaign. This followed on from 31-41 records in each of the last two seasons. Walton clearly was not the man to end the Kings’ lengthy playoff drought, and Sacramento is once again looking for a new head coach.

The Kings have now had 10 coaches in 15 years. Walton posted the best winning percentage of that group, but it was still far short of what the Kings are hoping for.

Alvin Gentry has been named as interim coach. The former Pelicans head coach is favored to replace Walton ahead of fellow NBA veterans Kenny Atkinson and Terry Stotts.

New Sacramento Kings Head Coach Odds

Coach
Odds

Alvin Gentry
+350

Kenny Atkinson
+500

Terry Stotts
+500

Doug Christie
+600

Darvin Ham
+700

Mike D’Antoni
+1000

Bobby Jackson
+1200

Mark Jackson
+1200

Becky Hammon
+1400

Sam Cassell
+1600

Steve Clifford
+1600

Rico Hines
+2500

Roy Rana
+2500

Odds as of Nov 22nd

2021-22 NBA MVP Award Odds Tracker

Gentry Gets His Chance

It’s never a good sign for a coach’s future when an experienced head coach is brought in as an assistant. Luke Walton suffered the same fate that Lloyd Pierce did in Atlanta, with Alvin Gentry playing Nate McMillan’s role. It makes sense for Gentry to be viewed as the favorite for the job – he’s the readymade replacement, bringing the least midseason turmoil.

Gentry will likely be given the opportunity to earn the job on a permanent basis. The schedule isn’t kind, though, with the Sixers, Blazers, Lakers (twice) and Grizzlies to come before December.

Since letting Rick Adelman go in 2006, the Sacramento Kings have had 10 coaches in 15 years and have not made the playoffs. pic.twitter.com/vHmI5xFYjK

— Kirk Goldsberry (@kirkgoldsberry) November 21, 2021

He brings experience, with over 1,100 NBA games coached, but Gentry isn’t exactly a proven regular season game-winner. He’s made the postseason just three times, and posted a record over .500 in just four of his 17 seasons. Some of that is down to circumstance, of course, but his recent record in New Orleans doesn’t suggest he’s the man to put it all together with this talented Kings roster.

Tried & Tested

While Gentry is clearly in the box seat, Kenny Atkinson and Terry Stotts are two names that could excite Kings fans. Atkinson was in a similar position with the Nets, overseeing a young core to regular season wins and making the playoffs. Stotts made the postseason in eight straight seasons with Portland.

Stotts’ credentials are particularly interesting. The Kings have a backcourt logjam of sorts with De’Aaron Fox, Buddy Hield, Tyrese Haliburton and Davion Mitchell. While Stotts couldn’t get the Blazers to the promised land, he made the Damian Lillard and CJ McCollum backcourt into a winning machine in the regular season. Sacramento’s young guards might not be Lillard and McCollum’s level just yet, but Stotts has shown he can get results while playing small.

Those Portland teams were also notoriously bad on defense. That side of the ball has proven a problem for the Kings in recent years – perhaps the organization wants a coach who can get their defense in order.

Maybe that gives Atkinson an advantage. The former Nets head coach is currently working alongside Steve Kerr at the Warriors, and his famous intensity could help push this Kings team on to the next level.

Steve Clifford falls into that category alongside Atkinson. Clifford prioritized defense with Orlando, and ended their playoff drought. Sacramento would be delighted if he could do the same in north California.

Cassell Gets His Turn

With over a decade as an assistant, Sam Cassell has long been associated with head coaching gigs. Linked to the Wizards in the offseason, it’s a matter of time before Cassell is the main man after accompanying Doc Rivers in Los Angeles and Philadelphia.

Cassell is an intriguing bet at +1600. Sacramento gave the tried and tested a go with Walton.

It might be the time for the organization to think a bit outside the box and step away from the usual carousel of NBA coaches.

Cassell has been widely praised for his role in the Sixers’ regular season success under Rivers – the former point guard would surely jump at the opportunity to work with Fox, Haliburton and Mitchell.

Author: wpadmin

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