HoopsHype Michael Malone rumors

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January 27, 2015 Updates
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December 29, 2014 Updates

Lately, the Kings have been surrendering season highs regularly. Talk of a faster tempo on offense has picked up since Michael Malone was fired as coach two weeks ago. And it looks as if Sacramento’s focus on defense was relieved of its duties, too. In the six games since Malone’s firing, five Kings opponents shot at least 47 percent, with the woeful Los Angeles Lakers the exception at 38 percent. All six teams scored at least 100 points. Last week, the Kings allowed their season highs in points (twice), assists, field goals and field-goal percentage. Over that stretch, the Kings didn’t have much trouble scoring, averaging 109.3 points. But they gave up 114.2 points per game in that span, a big reason they went 2-4. Sacramento Bee

December 27, 2014 Updates

Sean Cunningham: VIDEO: Isaiah Thomas on return to Sac, firing of Michael Malone & looking to have season's best game vs #NBAKings news10.net/videos/sports/… Twitter @News10Sean

December 22, 2014 Updates

David Aldridge: What do you think about what's going on in Sac right now? Isaiah Thomas: I mean, it caught everybody by surprise. I'm real close with Mike Malone. We talk all the time, every few weeks. It's tough. It's a tough situation. I didn't think it was going to happen. You can ask all the players there, it probably caught them off guard. 'Cause everybody fell in love with Mike Malone. He really changed the culture over there, and from the start they were having over there, it looked like things were changing for the better. But, I mean, you know how the NBA is. It's a business, and it seemed like they were butting heads a little bit, and they made their decision. NBA.com

December 21, 2014 Updates

The Sacramento Kings shocked many in the NBA world when they abruptly fired head coach Mike Malone last week. Malone is respected in league circles and most rival scouts, coaches and executives believe he had been doing a good job coaching the team. He was also popular in the Kings’ locker room, particularly with star DeMarcus Cousins. NBCSports.com

December 18, 2014 Updates

"Michael Malone is a good man," Ranadive said. "He's an honorable man, and he did great things for this organization. ... We needed a coach [in 2013] that would restore structure, restore discipline, restore a system defense, and I consulted with some of the experts in the business and they said [Malone] was a great choice." ESPN.com

December 17, 2014 Updates

“There is a never a good time to fire someone,” Ranadive explained later in the privacy of his office. “It’s a terrible thing. First of all, I want to say for the record that Michael Malone is a good man, an honorable man. He did a good job for us, and I believe that he was absolutely the right choice given the context of when we got him. I was handed the keys to the kingdom. This place was literally and figuratively falling apart. The roof was falling down. We hadn’t sold a single ticket. There was chaos in the locker room and the draft was weeks away. What we needed was order, structure, discipline, stability, a strong culture, and defense. And the experts in the league said he would bring all those things.” Sacramento Bee

The Kings’ basketball think tankers – Pete D’Alessandro, Chris Mullin, Mike Bratz – began lobbying Ranadive for a coaching change several weeks ago. According to the owner, D’Alessandro and Mullin flew to Las Vegas eight days ago, where he was attending a software conference, and persuaded him to change coaches, partly to change the culture but mainly to start scrapping the old offense. The push was on to replace the isolation plays and sluggish tempo with a faster pace, ball and body movement, quicker decisions, smaller lineups, and in essence, a more creative, free-flowing system. Sacramento Bee

“The NBA has increasingly become like the high-tech business,” said Ranadive. “Just because you invent the iPhone doesn’t mean you can rest on your laurels, because someone is building a better phone. Just because you win 50 games doesn’t mean the status quo is OK, or that you don’t try to get Ray Allen. Good enough just isn’t. You have to get better. So, we felt it was time for us to pivot, to (play) defense and offense. And we think we can make the playoffs.” This year? Again, the boss didn’t duck and run. He laid it on the table. “Absolutely, with DeMarcus (Cousins) coming back,” he said, “we have a chance to make the playoffs.” Sacramento Bee

December 16, 2014 Updates

"In that (technology) world, it's constant: the next thing, the next thing, the next thing," D'Alessandro told USA TODAY Sports from inside his office. "Pro sports is really similar if you think about it. ... To me, it's a much more similar type of field. A tech attitude, if you will, I think will lead to success in a more expeditious way. "That drive becomes almost a cultural drive, as opposed to, 'Well this person is really driven, and that person is really driven.' It's, 'this organization is driven.' I do think that this (Malone decision) comes from the way (Ranadive) has run tech companies. I think we're very open. We've been a very open system. We always talk about how open systems beat closed systems, and that's a very tech term but it's very true. We seek input as an organization from a lot of people." USA Today Sports

For all the focus on the Kings' solid start to this season that was so much better than anything they'd had in these parts for quite some time, Kings officials were growing tired of what they describe as a near-constant pushback from Malone on the ideological front. USA Today Sports

From Malone's reluctance to endorse the offering of contract extensions for DeMarcus Cousins and Rudy Gay to his preference that departed point guard Isaiah Thomas was re-signed in free agency to the pursuit of a new lead assistant coach during the summer, there were disagreements about personnel and style of play at every turn that brought them all to this tipping point. USA Today Sports

"I don't know if there was a point in time when you could say, 'Yeah this isn't (working),'" D'Alessandro said. "The respect always was there, but I just think we both knew that the vision for how to play wasn't the same. ... You start to see it evolve, and then you say, 'Let's just be honest about it then. Let's just be honest, and agree to disagree.' But then something has to happen. That's the league we're in." USA Today Sports

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