Kings announce Gentry won't return as coach next season


The Kings will not bring back interim head coach Alvin Gentry for the 2022-23 season, the team announced Monday. They will begin a search for a new head coach immediately.

“The entire Kings organization is grateful for the leadership of Alvin Gentry, who stepped up when he got the call mid-season,” general manager Monte McNair said in a statement. “We appreciate his leadership on and off the court.”           

The Athletic's Shams Charania and Sam Amick first reported the news.

The Kings are discussing a potential front-office role with Gentry to keep him in the organization, ESPN's Adrian Wojnarowski reported, citing sources.

Gentry was hired as Sacramento's associate head coach in 2020 and took over as interim coach last November after Luke Walton was fired. He finished with a 24-41 record at the helm of the Kings, who missed the playoffs in 2021-22 for an NBA-record 16th consecutive season.

The 67-year-old Gentry had more than 35 years of coaching experience before joining the Kings, including a five-year stint as coach of the New Orleans Pelicans from 2015-20.

He served under Walton during the 2020-21 season, but Walton was relieved of his duties after the Kings started this season 6-11. Gentry’s role under Walton was similar to his position with the Warriors under Steve Kerr in 2015, when he provided a veteran coaching presence to help Kerr guide Golden State to a championship.

But instead of earning a head coaching job at the end of the season, like he did with the Pelicans after leaving the Warriors, Gentry ended up taking over for Walton before being ousted himself.

Gentry’s departure means that the Kings will be on their 12th different coach since Rick Adelman coached the team from 1998-2006 – and none of the 11 coaches since Adelman finished their time with a winning record.

Related: 2022 NBA mock draft: Kings take Auburn forward No. 1 overall

In addition to the Pelicans, Gentry’s previous head coaching stops include the Phoenix Suns, Los Angeles Clippers, Detroit Pistons and Miami Heat. He led the Suns to the Western Conference Finals in 2010 and the Pelicans to the conference semifinals in 2018. 

In his brief tenure leading Sacramento, Gentry was capped by the interim title and an evolving roster. The Kings attempted to end their playoff drought this season by trading the up-and-coming Tyrese Haliburton for Domantas Sabonis from the Indiana Pacers, and dealing Marvin Bagley to the Detroit Pistons for Trey Lyles and Josh Jackson.

But Gentry’s Kings struggled down the stretch instead of making a playoff run, leaving them well outside the play-in tournament. 

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