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#pounditTuesday, February 7, 2023

Report: Dave Joerger wanted to trade Buddy Hield

Buddy Hield

The Sacramento Kings decided to move on from Dave Joerger on Thursday, and a big reason for that may have been that the head coach did not see eye-to-eye with the front office on how the team’s roster has been built.

Kings general manager Vlade Divac spoke highly of the team’s young players after dismissing Joerger, and a piece from Jason Jones of The Athletic makes it clear that was not a coincidence. According to Jones, Joerger was “not as high” on superstar guard Buddy Hield heading into this season and would have been in favor of trading him.

That isn’t exactly a shock, and anyone who watched what unfolded between Joerger and Hield late in a game against the Golden State Warriors back in February could tell something was amiss. After Hield drained a deep three-pointer late in the fourth quarter to pull Sacramento to within one possession, Joerger was seen screaming at him for not running the play that was called. Hield later passed up an open three-pointer that could have won the game, and he was critical of himself afterword for not taking the shot.

Despite what both Hield and Joerger said, sources told Jones the way Joerger went after Hield bothered the 26-year-old and influenced his decision.

Joerger also seemed to have issues with No. 2 overall draft pick Marvin Bagley III, who reportedly wondered privately if the coach even liked him. Again, that is not much of a surprise. Earlier in the year, Joerger took a shot at Sacramento’s front office for not drafting a different player at No. 2.

While it was a significant improvement that the Kings won 39 games this year, Divac and other team executives obviously feel a new coach can get more out of the roster. If Joerger didn’t believe in some of the key players on his team, Sacramento made the right move.

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