The Sacramento Kings made an unsurprising move on Sunday when they announced that they had fired head coach Luke Walton.
The Kings were 6-11 under Walton to begin the season, which really encapsulated his time in Sacramento. The team was 68-93 across three seasons with him as the bench boss, never finishing with a record better than 31-41 in that stretch. If the Kings wanted to save their season, it was a necessary move that needed to be made.
In the meantime, Alvin Gentry has taken over as Sacramento’s interim coach.
It’s likely that Gentry will remain with the Sacramento Kings throughout the rest of the season, however, it hasn’t been determined if he’ll be the next full-time coach.
According to BetOnline, Golden State Warriors assistant coach Kenny Atkinson is favored to be the next full-time coach for the Kings at +400 odds. The former player has coached four seasons in the NBA, all with the Brooklyn Nets from 2016 to 2020. The Nets had three seasons with 28 or fewer wins during that span, however, a 42-40 record in the 2018-19 season saw Brooklyn make the playoffs. Unfortunately, it ended with the Nets getting eliminated in five games.
Nevertheless, a lot has changed since then and now the Warriors are thriving with Atkinson helping out. They’re 15-2 with his help and those are the type of results Sacramento would love to have. If the Kings don’t show any improvements under Gentry going forward, there’s a real possibility that Atkinson could make his head coaching return in Sacramento.
Next Full-Time Sacramento Kings Coach Odds
Odds via BetOnline as of Tuesday, November 23
- Kenny Atkinson (+400)
- Terry Stotts (+500)
- Becky Hammon (+550)
- Alvin Gentry (+700)
- Darvin Ham (+800)
- Doug Christie (+1000)
- Mike D'Antoni (+1000)
- Bobby Jackson (+1200)
- Mark Jackson (+1200)
- Jeff Van Gundy (+1400)
- Stan Van Gundy (+1400)
- Sam Cassell (+1600)
- Steve Clifford (+1600)
- Charles Lee (+1600)
Stotts in Conversation for Kings Coaching Job
At +500 odds, Terry Stotts has the second-best odds to become the next full-time Sacramento Kings head coach. The 63-year-old coached the Atlanta Hawks and Milwaukee Bucks in the early 2000s before finding a job with the Portland Trail Blazers from 2012 to 2021.
Out of the three teams that he coached for, Stotts’ best work came in Portland, where he had a 402-318 record (.558).
Stotts also turned the Trail Blazers into a 50-win team after just a couple of seasons in the organization. To put things into perspective, the Kings have seven 50-win campaigns in their history, however, the most recent one came in 2004-05.
If Stotts could turn the Sacramento Kings around just like he did the Trail Blazers, the organization and its fanbase would be thrilled. After all, Sacramento hasn’t made the playoffs in nearly 16 years. Meanwhile, Stotts was coaching in the Western Conference Finals just over two years ago. It’d be a no-brainer for the Kings to consider hiring him.
Sacramento Kings Coaching Odds: Becky Hammon
San Antonio Spurs assistant coach Becky Hammon currently sits third (+550) when it comes to the Sacramento Kings head coach odds. Hammon made history in 2014 when she became the first female full-time assistant coach in NBA history. With Gregg Popovich helping develop her, she’s become someone who a lot of people could see being a head coach one day.
Hammon has been interviewed for head coaching jobs multiple times, so there’s clearly interest for her out there. While the Spurs haven’t been good lately, they’ve always had great culture under Popovich and that’s something that the Kings could use to usher in a new era.
At the end of the day, Hammon could also remain with San Antonio. It’s the organization that brought her into the league and she’d be the perfect successor for Popovich after all these years. If he doesn’t retire in the next few years, it could be enticing for Hammon to start her head coaching career in a place like Sacramento.