The Sacramento Kings' new ownership group has reached out to Hall of Famers Larry Bird and Chris Mullin as well as former NBA coach Mike Dunleavy about running the team's basketball operations, a search that is wide open, league sources told CBSSports.com on Monday. In addition to exploratory conversations with Bird and Mullin, the Kings have formally interviewed Dunleavy, Grizzlies GM Chris Wallace and Warriors assistant GM Travis Schlenk for the job, sources said. The search is "very fluid" and is expected to expand beyond the current crop of candidates, one person familiar with the process said. "It's wide open," another league source said. "It's not concrete on those guys." The Kings were introducing new head coach Michael Malone on Monday after the former Warriors assistant coach was hired prior to a new GM being in place to replace the ousted Geoff Petrie. There is hesitation among some members of the Kings' hierarchy about two aspects of the GM search as it stands now. League sources say there's a fear of the perception of installing too many transplants from the Warriors organization, and also a hesitation to begin the franchise's rebuild with a first-time head coach and first-time GM. Warriors advisor Jerry West, perceived as assisting new Kings owner Vivek Ranadive in the GM search, told USA Today that notion was "ludicrous. ... In no way, shape or form am I advising him, period." Ranadive is a former minority owner of the Warriors. West, however, is extremely high on Schlenk and has recommended him for various GM openings. Schlenk worked his way through the ranks with the Warriors from assistant coach to scout to assistant GM under Larry Riley and Bob Myers and has developed into one of the league's most highly regarded young executives. Having never been a GM and coming from the Warriors organization are two factors stacked against him in the Kings' search, sources said.
Kings speak with Bird, Mullin, Dunleavy as GM search widens
CBS Sports | Jun 3