After the team returns from its final road trip of the season, the Sacramento Kings are planning to announce the dismissal of coach George Karl on Thursday, league sources told The Vertical.
The Kings will allow Karl to travel back with the team late Wednesday night and will make official what’s been suspected for months: Once again, the Kings are in the market for a new coach.
Karl is aware of the timing of the Thursday dismissal, sources said.
Unlike the firing of coach Michael Malone in December 2014 – a unilateral, solo choice by owner Vivek Ranadive – the dismissal of Karl is a broader decision of ownership and top basketball executive Vlade Divac.
Karl is owed $6.5 million on the balance of his contract.
Two members of Karl’s coaching staff, Corliss Williamson and Nancy Lieberman, could stay to be a part of the next head coach’s staff, league sources said.
The Kings have been steadily working on an agreement to hire David Morway into a top front-office position under Vlade Divac, but no contract has been finalized, sources said. Morway had a successful run as the general manager of the Indiana Pacers under president Larry Bird and mostly recently had been the assistant general manager in Milwaukee.
The Kings are unlikely to have success pursuing the top coaches on the market, which include Jeff Van Gundy, Tom Thibodeau and Scott Brooks. None of the three has interest in the Kings job, league sources said.
The Kings will be working from a list that will include Vinny Del Negro, Boston Celtics assistant Jay Larranaga, ex-Cleveland Cavaliers coach David Blatt, Atlanta Hawks assistant Kenny Atkinson and former Phoenix Suns coach Jeff Hornacek, sources said.
Karl is 44-67 after being named coach of the Kings in February 2015.
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