As many of you probably are, I'm in the position to hire/fire people on a daily basis. I work for a large corporation so I don't have as much autonomy as a small business owner might, but still I own my area and I'm responsible for who works in that area of the company. I'm directly responsible for more $$ than the Kings payroll for the year - so even though my employees aren't pulling in millions each year the stakes are high. If there is one thing I've learned over the years being in this position is that you can't run an effective business with fear as a factor in making decisions. Fear of change, fear of the unknown, fear of failure - allowing those thoughts to come into your decision making means you've already negatively affected your area and your organization.
As I read the various posts regarding Westphal and whether or not he should be fired - I keep coming back to the same thing: fear. People are afraid it could get worse, they are afraid that history will repeat itself, they are afraid that the constant turnover and losing will lead to the franchise leaving the city. Fear seems to be the guiding factor for almost half the board and that is completely the wrong course to take.
Understanding the past and understanding the potential pitfalls to the future are definitely things we should be cognizant of. I'm not saying we shouldn't learn from our mistakes - but when decisions are made based on the fear of repeating those mistakes that's a bad decision as soon as it is made. Decisions should be made at all times with a purpose and goal in mind. The goal obviously is to improve the team - to develop your players and to return to winning ways. The fact that Kenny Natt was a bad coach, or that you had a bad experience with Theus and his assistants have absolutely nothing to do with this team today.
Today's (or in the near future hopefully) decision that needs to be made is whether Paul Westphal is the correct coach to develop these players and whether the team's current performance is satisfactory. If you do not believe he is the correct coach for this team then he must be fired. He should not be allowed to continue to coach the team regardless of his contract situation or what the pool of potential coaching candidates are. Many seem to think that the Kings must hold onto the coach because of the money invested in his contract but that is not how you run a business. PW's contract is a stranded cost - you simply are going to have to eat it as an operating expense and move forward.
I hope as the team continues to struggle and peformance continues to get worse that the Maloofs and Petrie do not let fear drive their decision making process. If an employee is not performing you need to move on - let them go and move on to a replacement. The negative impact of making the change will be far less than the negative impact an employee will have on an organization if they are allowed to stay and underperform. Acceptance of underperformers has a devastating effect on a team - bringing down standards and breeding negatively amongst team members.
I for one am not afraid: Fire Westphal now based on his/the team's poor performance and the absence of improvement. Time for the organization to move forward.