Paul Westphal chosen Coach for Sacramento Kings

June 11th, 2009 - 1:58 am ICT by GD  

The Sacramento Kings reached an agreement with Paul Westphal to be their fourth coach in three years after the Lakers’ assistant coach Kurt Rambis declined their offer. Westphal who is counted as an experienced player and coach,went 267-159 during parts of seven seasons leading the Phoenix Suns and Seattle Supersonics. He will be taking over after temporary coach Kenny Natt, after the Kings finished 17-65, with the dubious honor of having the worst record in the NBA history under the aegis of newcomer coach Reggie Theus. Geoff Petrie said Westphal met the criteria for a “a successful, experienced leader” and that “he has a wealth of experience in the NBA as both a coach and player.”

The Sacramento Kings seem to have been unlucky in their choice of coaches since Rick Adel man was fired by owners Joe and Gavin Maloof in 2006 after eight straight playoff appearances and winning seasons. After coach Eric Musselman left in 2007, and Reggie Theus barely started his second season before being fired Kenny Natt was given the position of interim coach. Natt finished up a horrible season with Sacramento, which even slipped to the No. 4 draft slot in the latest lottery.

Westphal’s has aleready had one attempt at the finals with Phoenix, but since then has spent only one season on court since late 2000, as an assistant in Dallas in 2007-08. He seemed to be looking forward to starting on his new position. “I’m really excited,” Westphal said. “This is a great opportunity, and I really appreciate the confidence the Maloofs and Geoff Petrie are showing me. I can’t wait to get to work.”

After one year as an assistant, Westphal spent the season as the Mavericks’ executive vice president of basketball operations . He interviewed for the job in Sacramento three weeks ago, and the Kings also interviewed other candidates Eddie Jordan, Kurt Rambis and Tom Thibodeau before continuing to talk with Westphal.

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