Kings hire Luke Walton

Coach Luke Walton. What's your initial reaction?

  • Great

  • Pretty happy

  • Unsure

  • Not real happy

  • Bummed


Results are only viewable after voting.
My reaction to this news is uncharacteristically blank. I basically have no opinion. We hired a guy. Vlade knows him and they obviously get along so that's a positive. When was the last time we had a coach and GM who were in agreement about where to take the team? Not since Geoff and Rick, right? So that's progress. But as a head coach Luke has very little track record. He was handed a tank job, showed impressive improvement on defense in year 2 and then the King James circus arrived (and accompanying 'Anthony Davis trade' excess baggage train -- still my favorite Lakers-related story in recent memory!) and you might as well just pretend this season didn't even happen because I can't see how to judge it.

The good news? He's being handed a team that is tailor made for the current NBA. Fox is a blur who showed this season that he can shoot too which makes him almost unfair on offense, Buddy is actually Steph-lite (I picture Vivek throwing up a silent shaka of triumph every time somebody makes the comparison), Barnes was literally the starting SF in Golden State for their first two Finals appearances and is a steady source of threes and brings an important safety valve to the offense with his post-game, Bagley is our presumed starting PF next year and he might not be a game-changer on defense (yet?) but he's been instant offense already and projects to be the strong presence on the boards we were sorely lacking for much of the year, and then you've got Bjelica and Bogdan, both saavy players who can shoot and pass plus all the untapped potential of "the next great passing big man" Harry Giles. We're a starting C away from being a 45-50 win team next year unless something goes seriously awry.

All Luke really needs to do here is get some buy-in on defense and keep the guys happy, healthy, and motivated. That should be doable I think.
 
My reaction to this news is uncharacteristically blank. I basically have no opinion. We hired a guy. Vlade knows him and they obviously get along so that's a positive. When was the last time we had a coach and GM who were in agreement about where to take the team? Not since Geoff and Rick, right? So that's progress. But as a head coach Luke has very little track record. He was handed a tank job, showed impressive improvement on defense in year 2 and then the King James circus arrived (and accompanying 'Anthony Davis trade' excess baggage train -- still my favorite Lakers-related story in recent memory!) and you might as well just pretend this season didn't even happen because I can't see how to judge it.

The good news? He's being handed a team that is tailor made for the current NBA. Fox is a blur who showed this season that he can shoot too which makes him almost unfair on offense, Buddy is actually Steph-lite (I picture Vivek throwing up a silent shaka of triumph every time somebody makes the comparison), Barnes was literally the starting SF in Golden State for their first two Finals appearances and is a steady source of threes and brings an important safety valve to the offense with his post-game, Bagley is our presumed starting PF next year and he might not be a game-changer on defense (yet?) but he's been instant offense already and projects to be the strong presence on the boards we were sorely lacking for much of the year, and then you've got Bjelica and Bogdan, both saavy players who can shoot and pass plus all the untapped potential of "the next great passing big man" Harry Giles. We're a starting C away from being a 45-50 win team next year unless something goes seriously awry.

All Luke really needs to do here is get some buy-in on defense and keep the guys happy, healthy, and motivated. That should be doable I think.
Just like when he coached the Warriors, right. Ready made team. Manage the personalities.
 
James would be a disruptive force on a lot of teams despite his talent. There is a reason Rondo gets traded all the time.
Vlade went for character this time having learned many lessons from trying to run a team through a player like Cousins.

It is possible that the new look KIngs with their good guy attitude and work ethics, could be a good fit for a character coach like Walton. This could be the magic ingredient that has been lacking. Young guys are searching for respectability and confidence. The Kings are a pretty humble team and could be very receptive to Woodenisms and Lute Olsenisms that a coach like Walton will bring.

You get maximum effort from even pro athletes when they feel respected and appreciated. Joerger had some issues along those lines from what we have heard with Bagley and Giles for instance. College teams often emphasis the family and caring about each other. Some of the KIngs players are still younger than college seniors. They may respond to Walton in that sort of a way. I sincerely hope so. There is a chance for greatness.
 
James would be a disruptive force on a lot of teams despite his talent. There is a reason Rondo gets traded all the time.
Vlade went for character this time having learned many lessons from trying to run a team through a player like Cousins.

It is possible that the new look KIngs with their good guy attitude and work ethics, could be a good fit for a character coach like Walton. This could be the magic ingredient that has been lacking. Young guys are searching for respectability and confidence. The Kings are a pretty humble team and could be very receptive to Woodenisms and Lute Olsenisms that a coach like Walton will bring.

You get maximum effort from even pro athletes when they feel respected and appreciated. Joerger had some issues along those lines from what we have heard with Bagley and Giles for instance. College teams often emphasis the family and caring about each other. Some of the KIngs players are still younger than college seniors. They may respond to Walton in that sort of a way. I sincerely hope so. There is a chance for greatness.
Agreed. I expect Luke to be here for a very long time and for all to grow very close
 
Agreed. I expect Luke to be here for a very long time and for all to grow very close
I think that is the hope from everyone but no one really knows. Everyone had the same expectations with Joerger signing as well.

4 years is a very long time. We sacked Joerger after 3 despite doing a pretty darn good job. People forget just how much of a basket case we were when we signed Joerger. The work he did here is outstanding.

Having said that, everyone here is hoping that Vlade/Walton combination is our new (and better) version of Petrie/Adelman. There are number of similarities between the two pairings. Vlade and Luke played together (albeit for a year) as did Geoff and Rick. Adelman had success with Blazers and underwhelming time with GSW. Luke had great success with GSW (albeit as a assistant coach) and an "interesting" chapter with the Lakers.

Hopefully it turns out to be a union that is as successful as RC Buford/Popovich over in San Antonio.
 
I think that is the hope from everyone but no one really knows. Everyone had the same expectations with Joerger signing as well.

4 years is a very long time. We sacked Joerger after 3 despite doing a pretty darn good job. People forget just how much of a basket case we were when we signed Joerger. The work he did here is outstanding.

Having said that, everyone here is hoping that Vlade/Walton combination is our new (and better) version of Petrie/Adelman. There are number of similarities between the two pairings. Vlade and Luke played together (albeit for a year) as did Geoff and Rick. Adelman had success with Blazers and underwhelming time with GSW. Luke had great success with GSW (albeit as a assistant coach) and an "interesting" chapter with the Lakers.

Hopefully it turns out to be a union that is as successful as RC Buford/Popovich over in San Antonio.
Joerger deserves more credit than he will probably ever get for the job he did here. We certainly did not make it easy on him. He took over the mess that was the Cousins, Gay, Collison era. Dealt with the Cousins trade and subsequent rebuild. Was tasked with developing young talent while distributing minutes with our vets like Hill, Randolph, and Carter. Then once those vets were traded he was given a team of even more young talent with no clear direction, wacky rotation players, and somehow managed to successfully develop the majority of our young guys, get them into a system that played beyond their expectations and win 39 games, our most in a decade. Factoring in what Joerger was dealt, he knocked it out of the park.
 
Joerger deserves more credit than he will probably ever get for the job he did here. We certainly did not make it easy on him. He took over the mess that was the Cousins, Gay, Collison era. Dealt with the Cousins trade and subsequent rebuild. Was tasked with developing young talent while distributing minutes with our vets like Hill, Randolph, and Carter. Then once those vets were traded he was given a team of even more young talent with no clear direction, wacky rotation players, and somehow managed to successfully develop the majority of our young guys, get them into a system that played beyond their expectations and win 39 games, our most in a decade. Factoring in what Joerger was dealt, he knocked it out of the park.
I agree with this, and while I've made a habit of "getting on board" (like with Bagley)... and I am on board with Luke... I think we could look back at this as a big mistake. Lets say Dave is an insufferable prick with his colleagues (gm and staff, etc - I would be surprised if he kissed Matina's ass)... still, he was a darn good basketball coach and I think Luke will have quite a job of proving he's better.

But I'm in. It won't help not to be.
 
I agree with this, and while I've made a habit of "getting on board" (like with Bagley)... and I am on board with Luke... I think we could look back at this as a big mistake. Lets say Dave is an insufferable prick with his colleagues (gm and staff, etc - I would be surprised if he kissed Matina's ass)... still, he was a darn good basketball coach and I think Luke will have quite a job of proving he's better.

But I'm in. It won't help not to be.
That's how I feel it should be. No matter how much you hate a draft/free agent/new coach, once he becomes a king, you have to root for success because doing otherwise (to prove you're right) just seems selfish and why would any fan want someone on his team to fail?Criticism is fine but in the end you gotta be all in because of not, why are you here?

Edit: not directed specifically towards you but quoted because I agree with the bold part.
 
Joerger deserves more credit than he will probably ever get for the job he did here. We certainly did not make it easy on him.
Disagree completely. I think he’s already receiving too much credit for the 12 game improvement. This team is a lot better because they’ve added a ton of talent the past 2.5 seasons. Namely Buddy, Swipa, Bogdan and MB3. I feel quite strongly that a fair amount of current NBA coaches could have done the same or better with that type of talent.

Not only do I believe the team should have won more than they did this season, I think Joerger delayed improvement by opting for his slow paced offense led by Zach Randolph during De’Aaron Fox’s rookie season. Had he made the strategic change a year earlier, the team might have been further along.

But I will agree that year 1 wasn’t so easy and the teams talent with Cousins leading the way necessitated a slower pace. But no excuse for him not changing and adapting the following season.
 
Joerger deserves more credit than he will probably ever get for the job he did here. We certainly did not make it easy on him. He took over the mess that was the Cousins, Gay, Collison era. Dealt with the Cousins trade and subsequent rebuild. Was tasked with developing young talent while distributing minutes with our vets like Hill, Randolph, and Carter. Then once those vets were traded he was given a team of even more young talent with no clear direction, wacky rotation players, and somehow managed to successfully develop the majority of our young guys, get them into a system that played beyond their expectations and win 39 games, our most in a decade. Factoring in what Joerger was dealt, he knocked it out of the park.
Agree with everything aside from the bolded, where I think it's debatable whether he was tasked to do that or whether that's what he wanted to do in the first place, with Vlade having to trade the vets to get Joerger to play the young guys more.
 
Disagree completely. I think he’s already receiving too much credit for the 12 game improvement. This team is a lot better because they’ve added a ton of talent the past 2.5 seasons. Namely Buddy, Swipa, Bogdan and MB3. I feel quite strongly that a fair amount of current NBA coaches could have done the same or better with that type of talent.

Not only do I believe the team should have won more than they did this season, I think Joerger delayed improvement by opting for his slow paced offense led by Zach Randolph during De’Aaron Fox’s rookie season. Had he made the strategic change a year earlier, the team might have been further along.

But I will agree that year 1 wasn’t so easy and the teams talent with Cousins leading the way necessitated a slower pace. But no excuse for him not changing and adapting the following season.
I'm with this line of thinking. Vlade went out of his way to draft and acquire high character, extremely hard working players. Their growth and improvement was inevitable because of those characteristics. Vlade was letting Joerger do his job without interference at the coaching level. But he clearly had to rid the team of vets in order to give Joerger no options but to play the most talented players. It still didn't totally work.

Joeger was indeed the best coach the Kings have had since Malone. But Joerger's personality is best suited for a veteran, conservative team.
 
I agree with this, and while I've made a habit of "getting on board" (like with Bagley)... and I am on board with Luke... I think we could look back at this as a big mistake. Lets say Dave is an insufferable prick with his colleagues (gm and staff, etc - I would be surprised if he kissed Matina's ass)... still, he was a darn good basketball coach and I think Luke will have quite a job of proving he's better.

But I'm in. It won't help not to be.
We will see. It’s clear Vlade wants to go with two bigs in Giles and Bagley. I assume Luke and he are on the same page. I’m not sure Dave agreed. Many basketball people think playing both is a recipe for failure as both are best suited for 5. Vlade consistently mentions Bagley at the 3.

Vlade has a vision. It’s not broadly shared in terms of his young bigs. But Vlade has a coach whom he thinks can develop that vision. That person wasn’t Dave. It’s better to have both people on the same page even if it’s the wrong one.
 
We will see. It’s clear Vlade wants to go with two bigs in Giles and Bagley. I assume Luke and he are on the same page. I’m not sure Dave agreed. Many basketball people think playing both is a recipe for failure as both are best suited for 5. Vlade consistently mentions Bagley at the 3.

Vlade has a vision. It’s not broadly shared in terms of his young bigs. But Vlade has a coach whom he thinks can develop that vision. That person wasn’t Dave. It’s better to have both people on the same page even if it’s the wrong one.
I never saw more exciting basketball last season than when Marvin and Harry were on the floor together. I don't know if it is sound tactics in the big picture, but it is beautiful when it is clicking.
 
Assuming WCS leaves in free agency I'd like to see Bagley put on some muscle this summer and get the starting center spot next season.

Fox
Hield
Barnes (assuming he stays)
Bjelica
Bagley

with Giles getting backup minutes at the 4 and 5.
 
Joerger deserves more credit than he will probably ever get for the job he did here. We certainly did not make it easy on him. He took over the mess that was the Cousins, Gay, Collison era. Dealt with the Cousins trade and subsequent rebuild. Was tasked with developing young talent while distributing minutes with our vets like Hill, Randolph, and Carter. Then once those vets were traded he was given a team of even more young talent with no clear direction, wacky rotation players, and somehow managed to successfully develop the majority of our young guys, get them into a system that played beyond their expectations and win 39 games, our most in a decade. Factoring in what Joerger was dealt, he knocked it out of the park.
I agree that Joerger deserves more credit than he will get around here. But his weaknesses are real, and in hindsight he has been his own worst enemy. I think he's good enough of a coach that, barring injuries to key players, he would have been able to get us into the playoffs next year. But hopefully Luke, sympatico with Vlade, will take us all the way, with next year being a big step in that journey.
 
Lakers were playing pretty good and promising actually with their young unit (Ball, Kuzma, Ingram, Hart etc) until Magic and Lebron with additional washed up guys (Rondo, Stevenson, McGee, Beasley) messed it up. I kind of knew right away when Lakers got Lebron that Walton will have a hard time coaching that Lakers team. With him with the Kings young roster would be promising! Excited to see what he can do next year.
 
I have a built in feeling of antipathy towards Walton, probably due to his years with the Lakers. But if I restrict my view of him to his coaching career, what has he done? If winning a championship with the Warriors makes him a great coach, then Tyrone Lue is also a great coach. Am I supposed to take one 35 win year with the Lakers as evidence that he is the guy to take us to the playoffs?
 
I think similar to evaluating players, you have to look at ‘skill set’ more so than record and championships. Particularly pertaining to players and coaches that haven’t been in the league for awhile. For coaches their offensive and defensive philosophies, basketball IQ, ability to adapt, communicate, leadership, ability to teach and develop, attention to detail, passion and commitment are some main qualities that I think are key for a good coach.

Jury is still out on Walton but I feel like he at least has the majority of qualities that make a good coach so I have a reasonable yet guarded level of optimism things will work out. Obviously in an ideal situation as a very inexperienced coach he flourished during his short stint in golden state, LA was a mixed bag that ended poorly dealing with several strong personalities, dysfunction throughout the organization including trade rumors involving their entire young core fueled by Lebron and major injuries. I’m sure he learned a lot in both situations that he can bring here
 
I think similar to evaluating players, you have to look at ‘skill set’ more so than record and championships. Particularly pertaining to players and coaches that haven’t been in the league for awhile. For coaches their offensive and defensive philosophies, basketball IQ, ability to adapt, communicate, leadership, ability to teach and develop, attention to detail, passion and commitment are some main qualities that I think are key for a good coach.
Yes, coaching success is so context-based that you can't simply say "he did X here, so he'll do the same there." Plenty of coaches have had great success in certain situations and failed in others, and not simply because of talent level but other factors of style, personality and fit.

It isn't about giving Walton credit for his time with the Warriors or blaming him for what happened this season with the Lakers. It's about assessing his personal qualities as a coach and how those will fit with the Kings roster and organization going forward. I'm sure that's how Vlade made his choice.
 
We will see. It’s clear Vlade wants to go with two bigs in Giles and Bagley. I assume Luke and he are on the same page. I’m not sure Dave agreed. Many basketball people think playing both is a recipe for failure as both are best suited for 5. Vlade consistently mentions Bagley at the 3.

Vlade has a vision. It’s not broadly shared in terms of his young bigs. But Vlade has a coach whom he thinks can develop that vision. That person wasn’t Dave. It’s better to have both people on the same page even if it’s the wrong one.
I think Bagley and Giles are best suited for the 4 and can play the 5 in small ball unless they are going up against Adams, Gobert, Embiid, etc. I think each of them have the lateral quickness to stay with Draymond Green and other 4/3 type players. I have only heard of Vlade referring to Bagley as a 3 one time, though it has often been repeated by others:)
 
I have only heard of Vlade referring to Bagley as a 3 one time, though it has often been repeated by others:)
Ping! It's possible that Vlade has said it more than once, but it's even more possible, and probably even extremely likely, that Vlade wasn't trying to say that Bagley will be best suited as a Small Forward - in a traditional sense. I don't like the term "positionless basketball." I think it's an extreme oversimplification. But if you look at today's Celtics, for example, most of their players can play 3 positions on defense, and 3 positions on offense. Some 4 positions. That doesn't mean they are equally good at all the positions they can play. I think Vlade has bought into that kind of flexibility and adaptability and Dave had trouble getting his square peg into the round hole. After the trade deadline, Dave was so hungry to get his five best players into the starting lineup that he had two of them playing out of position (i.e. out of their best positions or in bad match ups) with Bogi at the 3 and Barnes at the 4. Doesn't mean they can't play those positions, but hopefully they can spend most of their time in the position or in the match up for which they are most effective.