The NBA Coaching carousel just got a little bit more dizzier. 2012-13 coach of the year George Karl is out as Nuggets headcoach and the Nuggets are said to be interested in talking to Memphis Grizzles coach …Lionel Hollins and in Indiana assistant Brian Shaw. Karl had one year left on his current contract and had been pushing for a contract extension, which apparently the Nuggets management and ownership were not keen on the idea.
For Kroenke, this was a bold move for the franchise, but multiple sources said that Karl had been so unhappy about going into the final year of his contract without a new deal that things could’ve become untenable with him.
Nuggets management believes it can attract an elite coach with its talented, young roster.
With the departure of GM Masai Ujiri to Toronto, Denver will be starting over with its front office and coaching leadership.
The timing of his ouster gives Karl a chance to get involved with other head coaching openings, including those with the Clippers, Grizzlies and possibly Nets.
Denver won 57 games and earned a third seed in the Western Conference playoffs. A key injury to forward Danilo Gallinari helped derail the Nuggets in a first-round series loss to Golden State.
After completing his ninth season with the Nuggets, Karl, 62, has 1,131 victories as an NBA head coach, including a .599 winning percentage.
The lone knock on Karl is that his teams usually do not advance beyond the first round in the playoffs. Only one season (2008-09) did the Nuggets make it to the conference finals, all of the other seasons the Nuggets have not advanced beyond the first round. Ownership is sending the message clearly getting to the playoffs are not good enough.