The Sacramento Kings are letting coach Luke Walton go after getting off to a disappointing start in his third season in charge, a spokesperson with the team confirmed to KCRA-3.
Walton was informed of the decision a day after a 123-105 home loss to Utah that dropped the Kings to 6-11 on the season. Walton had a 68-93 record in two-plus seasons as coach, failing to get Sacramento back to the playoffs for the first time since the 2005-06 season. Associate coach Alvin Gentry takes over on an interim basis. Gentry most recently served as head coach for the New Orleans Pelicans. He has also had head coaching stops with Miami, Detroit, the Clippers and Phoenix. "We all know all of us have to be better, especially over the last two weeks,'' general manager Monte McNair said. "We're not meeting expectations. That's not just on Luke. That's on me, the rest of our coaches and players. Everyone acknowledges that.''
The Kings are discussing potential benchmarks of success for Gentry the rest of the season that could serve as possible parameters on keeping the job on a long-term basis, sources said.
"I think we have the talent,'' McNair said. "We've shown that we can do that. We're going to get back to that and Alvin will be the guy to lead us there.''