The Sacramento Kings picked their new head coach over the weekend. It came down to two finalists. In the end, the Kings go over former Warriors head coach Mark Jackson with current Golden State Warriors assistant Mike Brown. Neither name is that exciting, but Sacramento made the right choice in Brown.
Based on the disputes with Jackson and Golden State and what was going on behind the scenes, the Kings made the best choice. I’d even go so far as to say they probably dodged a bullet by not hiring Jackson. While coaching the Warriors, Jackson once attempted to turn the locker room on an injured player, claiming it was him dig against it losing her so he would look good.
So much was going on with Jackson in the Golden State that I’m sure Sacramento got wind of it and decided it wasn’t the best route. Frankly, Brown is a much better coach than Jackson will ever be. Sure, Brown had a young LeBron James in Cleveland and has made most of his earnings in those five years.
But what victorious NBA head coach hasn’t had an all-time great superstar or multiple stars? I’m not putting Brown on the level of a Hall of Famer coach, I’m just saying that in this league you need stars to win. We hear about that all the time in the NBA. Finding star players, whether you design and develop them or poach a few vacant hands, is how you win in the NBA.
Now Brown is tasked with reviving a dying franchise that hasn’t seen the postseason since 2005-06, which coincidentally was Brown’s first year as coach of the Cavs. Since then, Sacramento has not finished a season with a win ratio higher than .476. Needless to say, Brown clipped his work for him.
Hopefully Brown can apply what he’s learned over the last six years as a Golden State staffer to Sacramento without being too much like the Warriors, as we’ve seen how that works for the rest of the league if you’ve got it not the staff to play like the warriors. Brown will have some young talent to work with De’Aaron FoxDomantas Sabonis and Davion Mitchell.
With the Kings in a stacked Western Conference and Pacific division, it will be a couple of years before we see any significant improvement in Sacramento. At this point do a The appearance of the play-in tournament would be a definite improvement for the Kings. Just finish the top 10 in the west. Sacramento finished the year in 12th place and only four games from the play-in this season. So they were close, but not really.
Brown could change the culture in Sacramento if the front office gets out of his way and allows him to; but you must be patient. It won’t happen overnight. Brown’s final tenure as head coach, which was his second run at Cleveland, lasted a full season. The Cavs team was also young, “led” by Kyrie Irving and other. Had Dan Gilbert been more patient, they would have put the old band back together just a year later when LeBron returned home for the 2014-15 campaign.
Something else that’s quite noticeable about the Kings’ hiring of Brown is their ongoing infatuation with former Warriors coaches. There’s the aforementioned Brown and Jackson, and there’s Luke Walton, Mike Malone and Alvin Gentry to name a few. Sacramento is about 90 minutes from San Francisco, but come on. The Kings keep hiring all these guys from Golden State and none have worked out. I think this is more of a front office thing, but maybe Brown can get past that aspect. It won’t be easy, but I just want him to do it more than once.
The last time Brown was the head coach of an NBA franchise, only 16 teams made it into the postseason. We essentially have 2/3 of The Association playing past the 82-game regular season with the play-in. Brown needs to have those kings in one of those 10 spots out west within a year or two. Let’s just hope management doesn’t sabotage his efforts by bargaining away more promising talent as kings are known to do.