Luke Walton out as Lakers coach after 3 losing seasons

Luke Walton out as Lakers coach after 3 losing seasons

Per Sam Amick of The Athletic, Kings' GM Vlade Divac is expected to reach out to Walton to schedule an interview for Sacramento's head coaching vacancy. Working with Ball's then-agent Harrison Gaines, the Lakers' brass managed to convince the second-year player to nix the procedure.

Walton spent three seasons as the helm of the Lakers and even though the team saw its best finish of that stretch last season, it's hard to consider the organization's campaign a success given the expectations after the arrival of LeBron James. The Hall of Fame point guard was upset with the team's defense and sluggish start but later told the Los Angeles Times and ESPN that Walton would not be fired barring something unforeseen.

James missed 17 games with a left groin injury and the Lakers, as a whole, missed a combined 210 games because of injuries, including those to Lonzo Ball (ankle) and Brandon Ingram (blood clot in shoulder) that ended their respective seasons.

Walton went 98-148 in three seasons with the Lakers, including a 37-45 mark this season. The team called it a mutual agreement.

Walton had been with the Lakers as head coach since 2016.

He was in charge as LeBron and the Cavs took two more trips to the NBA Finals, though they were beaten by the Golden State Warriors both times.




"I want to thank Jeanie Buss and the Buss family for giving me the opportunity to coach the Lakers", Walton said.

Pace is what propelled the Kings to their surprising finish this season, and Walton is certainly capable of piloting a team that plays fast. I don't think his say-so is like his say-so.

Prior to joining the Lakers, Walton spent two seasons as an assistant coach on Steve Kerr's staff with Golden State, winning an National Basketball Association title in 2015. The Lakers' season fell apart during the longest injury absence of James' career, and they ended the season with almost every important player in their young core sidelined by injuries.

Speculation is already centering on James' former coach with the Cleveland Cavaliers, Tyronn Lue, who was sacked by the Cavs after an 0-6 start to the second post-LeBron era.

Multiple reports suggest that Walton, 39, is on the verge of becoming the next head coach of the Sacramento Kings.

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