Latest News, NBA / Jan 5, 2012 / 3:00 pm

Breaking News: Sacramento Kings Fire Head Coach Paul Westphal

Paul Westphal

Paul Westphal

In a 66-game season, a 2-5 start isn’t that easy to turn around. So what do you do if you’re the Sacramento Kings? You fire your head coach. See you later, Paul Westphal.

After just two-plus seasons in Sacramento, where Westphal amassed a record of 51-120, Kings President of Basketball Operations Geoff Petrie made the announcement before tonight’s home game against Milwaukee. Keith Smart, let go by the Warriors after one season this summer, will serve as interim head coach.

“I want to thank Paul for all of his effort on behalf of the Kings,” said Petrie in a press release. “Unfortunately, the overall performance level of the team has not approached what we felt was reasonable to expect. I wish him the best in his future endeavors.”

“I would like to thank the Maloof family for the incredible opportunity they gave me to participate in the attempt to bring the Sacramento Kings back to prominence,” said Westphal. “While the job is far from finished, I am proud of the strides we were able to make.

“Geoff Petrie and his staff have been nothing but honest and supportive throughout my time here. They are first class in every way and I wish them nothing but success. My hope is to see the fans of the Kings and the city of Sacramento rewarded with many years of great basketball.

“Finally, I want to thank my loyal staff and players for their efforts in attempting to climb out of the hole we shared. Nothing comes easy in the NBA and I know they will not rest in their efforts to rebuild this team.”

Last place in the Pacific Division is not a place anyone wants to be. And with a talented roster – including DeMarcus Cousins – you knew a change was bound to happen.

What do you think? Who should be the next coach of the Kings?

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  • http://www.dimemag.com Austin Burton

    Dang, that was quick. So much for taking a stance against Cousins. Kid goes out and drops 26 points off the bench after his alleged-or-not tantrum, and Westphal is gone. Talent always wins.

  • Me

    who didn’t see this coming? I knew he wouldn’t last a week.

  • Dana Walker

    Yeah talent wins. I really think they need to get a coach that can deal with that kid. Someone that has been in the NBA and won. Not sure who they can get though to coach a team thats in last place and going nowhere fast. Shame too, having Tyreke Evans and Cousins you figure they would have more wins.

  • Reg

    Why even have head coaches in the NBA? It’s clear that the players run the show.

  • Kudabeen

    Turn 2-5 around to what!?! It is the Kings…Young, No All-Star, No on the floor leadership…What exactly are they trying to turnaround…

    This move was more about management not liking Coach Westphal’s style. He is not an excitable/rah rah guy. So when the NBA pundits are talking about Their “best” player having to be moved to be productive…it is possible they decided it was the coaches lack of ability to bridge the generation gap with the players…That was a bad hire anyway.

    Sac needed a Mark Jackson…Young enough to relate, but old/experienced enough to understand what it takes to be a real competitor.

    2-5 for the Kings is like 6-1 for Miami, so it isn’t the record.

  • http://www.psychodrama.com Chicagorilla

    I am not a Paul Westphaul fan, i never thought he was a good coach….BUT wtf man.

    Do they seriously think DMC is that good of a player? Do they think that firing this coach because of that player is going to attract another good coach? lol, i need to have that GM Job. I would’ve settled this $h!t long ago.

  • nyk

    hahaha the joke’s on the kings the next time cousins act like a big baby.

    Glen Davis, give your nickname to DMC!

  • Goaji

    It shows who has all the power on this team! It came down to DMC or the coach and the management sided with the cranky player. Not a good example to set for the rest of the team!

  • catdaddywhack

    Players: 1
    Head Coaches: 0

    C-Web for coach! LOL
    Or Vlade – he ain’t doing much these…?

  • beiber newz

    phil jackson….another good 2 guard-big man combo to his disposal.. he can run the triangle there… management can bring him the players he wants to build around evans-cousins the two stars, and he’ll know how to properly use fridette….

    just kidding, but as i wrote this, i started to convince myself that phil can be the man..he’d be returning to LA and have a young team he can build up, and that way he can erase the whole “he only won because he had superstars”

    dang, i think jackson actually could be good here actually. lol

  • JDish

    hmm … first off I think that it’s unfair to fire the coach if and when there are conflicts with a player’s attitude.
    Unfortunately this is one of those cases where (as it has been said already) the talent of the player overshadows his own issues with his conduct.
    On the other hand, this is the NBA. Too much money -with a grest amount of talent and potential- is being spent on this kid just to cut him loose and give him away to another team and watch him grow up and succeed somewhere else. The truth is it’s better for a team to cut loose a coach that maybe isn’t living up to expectations rather than looking to get rid of talented players that may have behavioral issues. It could be that these players need more time and/or a coaching change to get them to growup and improve as basketball players.
    It really is sad and unfortunate to see these kinds of situations, but in the NBA it’s necessary because there is too much at stake: the money, talent & potential of the players, the future of the franchise.

  • vlad

    there is no way that the kings are going to win a chip in the next years. its not a coach thing tu much egos playin ball, i like the talent but there is nothing else, not like in the old days with vlade, chris and white c.

  • Bear

    Westphal has never been a great coach, I know he had the suns in ’93 Finals but that was more Chuck and KJ killing it (With some THUNDER). But look at when he had the sonics after George Karl, the weren’t worth a chocolate coffee pot. Demarcus Cousins is always going to be a pain, but if they can get a good coach that will challenge him, without seeming like a dick, and gain respect I bet Cousins fall’s in line.

    If Adelman was still there, I bet cousins wouldn’t be such a bitch, as Rick earns players respects and has a proven record, whether that’s with Superstars (Drexler, Webber), Role players (Scola, Chuck Hayes), Young pups (Kevin Martin-sac town days, Kyle Lowry) or Mental patients (Metta). There aren’t any coaches left out there that can earn a players respect that aren’t already coaching. Saying that i’d love Jerry sloan to come back and see what he’d coach the kings like.

  • beiber newz

    maybe phil jackson’s zen master powers can calm the spirits in sac town

  • Michorizo

    Westphal should have kept all the drama in house…you don’t say you are going to trade a player as a coach unless you speak with the GM, Owner, player’s agent …you hurt the player’s trade value even if the GM/Owner wanted to trade him.

  • K Dizzle

    “In a 66-game season, a 2-5 start isn’t that easy to turn around”

    Is this sarcasm or a joke?
    You think the Mavs are done too?

  • BiGShoTBoB

    Who’s even available? Van Gundy maybe?


    BN is the joke. PJ in Sacto?! U trippin?! History, market potential, bad blood, no elite level player, too young, not enough BB IQ… Those are just the obvious ones. If Lakers’ management just gets one small whiff of Zen, they’ll just outbid whatever the Maloofs offer topped off by Jeanie Buss’ pussy! It’ll be over before DMC could even say “triangle my ass”!

  • Lee

    Can’t believe Jerry Sloan doesn’t have owners banging down his door. That guy knows basketball. He got some sub par teams to the playoffs in Utah.

  • AusZonday88

    Wonder If firing Westphal over’ performane issues’ is a cover because Demarcus Cousins cracked a shit fit and they are trying to keep him happy??

  • http://deleted dagwaller

    Westphal issues classy statement.

    Cousins demands a trade.

    Westphal gets fired.

    Cousins signs contract extension for 9 million dollars after a 14 and 9 season.

    We all count down til the next CBA gets hahsed out (they should be working on it RIGHT NOW, btw).

  • Dana Walker

    yeah Im sure Phil Jack would come back to coach this team out of all the teams he could take his pick from.