After a couple weeks of surprising competence, the Sacramento Kings are once again hurtling towards chaos. Just days after reports emerged that the Kings were leaning toward firing head coach George Karl, ESPN’s Marc Stein is reporting that the decision has been made to let him go before the All-Star Break. As far as midseason coaching changes go, this one would be one of the least surprising we’ve ever seen.
Karl has never been much of a stabilizing force — remember when he tried to strongarm DeMarcus Cousins out of town? — and it seems like the Kings have well and truly quit on him.
Who would have thought that Rajon Rondo was one of the more committed players in Sacramento? This isn’t a case of outright mutiny, however. Rondo himself revealed that the shootarounds weren’t mandatory:
Make no mistake, even though Rondo showed up, his comments are nothing but critical of Karl’s policies. Even if the Kings fire him simply to mend fences with Cousins and the rest of the Kings, it’s a justified move. Stein reports that former Kings player and current assistant Corliss Williamson is the likely choice to take over as interim head coach after Karl’s dismissal, and a tough former player will probably do a better job of rallying the troops than a 64-year-old who tends to throw his players under the bus.
If and when Karl is let go, however, the biggest problem facing Sacramento won’t change. Majority owner Vivek Ranadive has repeatedly shot the organization in the foot, and it’s gotten so bad that the minority owners are reportedly trying to find a way to usurp control of the team. It won’t work unless Vivek himself has a change of heart, but hopefully they can at least persuade him to take a step back in time for them to find a head coach — and maybe even a front office — worth keeping.