Yesterday, Peter Vecsey tweeted that Mike Malone was a "living lock" to be the next coach of the Sacramento Kings. Today, USA Today's Sam Amick confirms Sacramento's interest.
Even though no formal announcement has been made about current coach Keith Smart, two people with knowledge of the situation said Ranadive is targeting Golden State assistant Michael Malone above all others and indicated that - if Malone agrees to come - his hiring could very well precede the hiring of a general manager. The people spoke to USA TODAY Sports on the condition of anonymity because of the private nature of the discussions. The order of those affairs would certainly be unorthodox, but Ranadive has been a fan of Malone's for quite some time and appears determined to bring him aboard.
The reason Sacramento feels the need to act quickly is because Malone is a hot commodity and is already interviewing for other head coaching gigs, including the coveted Los Angeles Clippers position. Amick notes that Malone has close ties with Clippers star Chris Paul from their time in New Orleans. On Twitter, Amick says that Malone is scheduled to interview with the Clippers soon.
In other hiring news, the Kings are already in the midst of searching for a new GM, with Amick reporting that Golden State's Travis Schlenk has already been interviewed and Memphis' Chris Wallace is being interviewed this week. R.C. Buford, another target, is not expected to be interested in the job, and Oklahoma City denied the Kings permission to speak to Troy Weaver.