It took three extra days, but the Los Angeles Lakers eventually fired head coach Luke Walton following three seasons with a 98-148 record.
As former president of basketball operations Magic Johnson’s resignation could have changed Walton’s situation, the Lakers made the same decision despite him wanting to remain head coach.
While it must have been difficult for Walton, he was quickly hired to become the Sacramento Kings head coach on a multi-year deal after meeting with general manager Vlade Divac.
Along with Walton, assistant coach Mark Madsen was quickly hired to become the Utah Valley University Men’s Basketball head coach, according to Adrian Wojnarowski of ESPN:
Los Angeles Lakers assistant Mark Madsen has been hired as the new men’s basketball coach at Utah Valley, sources told ESPN.
Madsen flew to Utah on Sunday, where he is expected to meet with his new players on campus Sunday, sources said.
A formal announcement of Madsen’s hiring is planned on Sunday, sources said.
Originally the No. 29 pick in the 2000 NBA Draft by the Lakers, Madsen won back-to-back championships in 2001 and 2002. Following a nine-year playing career, Madsen became the Los Angeles D-Fenders head coach in 2013 and eventually joined former head coach Byron Scott’s coaching staff in 2014.
When Walton was hired in 2016, Madsen was retained from Scott’s coaching staff. Along with playing and coaching for the Lakers, the 43-year-old received an MBA degree from Stanford Graduate School of Business.