The Kings have a promising young core and salary-cap space as they head into an important summer. Now, they just need to find the right guy to lead them.
After finishing the season with a disappointing loss to the Portland Trail Blazers, Kings general manager Vlade Divac fired coach Dave Joerger on Thursday.
With Joerger out, the Kings will be looking for a new coach to take De'Aaron Fox, Marvin Bagley and Co. to the next level, and Divac might have his eyes on someone who also could receive his walking papers soon.
Lakers coach Luke Walton, who has been under fire all season in Los Angeles, reportedly would be a candidate to replace Joerger, The New York Times' Marc Stein reported Thursday, citing league sources.
Amid reports that Kings coach Dave Joerger's job is in jeopardy, league sources say that Sacramento would have interest in Luke Walton should they decide to go through with a coaching change— Marc Stein (@TheSteinLine) April 11, 2019
Walton is the "clear frontrunner" for the job, The Athletic's Sam Amick reported, citing sources.
Can confirm @wojespn report that Kings GM Vlade Divac will fire coach Dave Joerger today. Lakers coach Luke Walton - if available - is the clear frontrunner here, per sources. Former New Orleans coach Monty Williams is also a strong candidate, as is Spurs asst. Ettore Messina.— Sam Amick (@sam_amick) April 11, 2019
Walton, of course, has not been fired yet, and with Magic Johnson abruptly resigning as team president, the coach's future is more in doubt than ever.
Despite the Lakers' disappointing season, there's little more Walton could have done to lead the Purple and Gold to the playoffs.
Given a curious roster that didn't quite fit together, Walton did his best to navigate a plethora of injuries, bad chemistry and countless rumors throughout the season, but it was too much for the talented coach and LeBron James to overcome.
Should the Lakers choose to move on from Walton, he would be an ideal candidate to lead the young Kings.