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Kings tab Rocket’s McNair as new GM

Monte McNair

The Sacramento Kings announced on Thursday that Monte McNair will be the team’s new general manager and head all aspects of basketball operations. He replaces Vlade Divac, who resigned back in August.

“Monte is one of the NBA’s top basketball minds who has played an instrumental role in building several winning teams in Houston,” Kings owner Vivek Ranadive said. “I am excited to bring his extensive experience and vision onboard to lead our basketball operations department, and it is my pleasure to welcome Monte and his family to Sacramento.”

McNair served under Houston Rocket’s GM Daryl Morey as an Assistant GM since 2018 but has held various roles with the organization since 2007. He is known as an analytics-driven basketball mind and is expected to bring that philosophy to Sacramento.

He joins a franchise desperate for a return to respectability in the NBA. The Kings have not been to the playoffs in 14 seasons, and McNair’s #1 job will be to build a team that will break that streak.

“I am thrilled to join the Kings organization and honored to shape the franchise’s bright future for the team’s loyal fans,” McNair said. “I would like to thank Vivek for this opportunity and look forward to becoming a part of the Sacramento community.”

Several major decisions will loom during his first couple months on the job. The De’Aaron Fox extension, the Bogdan Bogdanovic restricted free-agency, and what to do with Buddy Hield. He also has an NBA Draft to prepare for, where Sacramento currently has the 12th, 35th, 43rd, and 52nd picks.

He also needs to build out his front office staff quickly. Assistant GM Peja Stojaković resigned shortly after Divac’s departure, leaving just assistant GM Ken Catanella as the lone hold out from the previous administration. However, reports have surfaced that McNair will ask the team’s cap guru to join his new staff in the same role.

In another move, it was announced that Interim Vice-President of Basketball Operations Joe Dumars has been named Chief Strategy Officer. Basically, he’ll fade off into the distance and not really be an active member of the basketball ops moving forward but provide his input from afar here and there.

All in all, a positive move for the Sacramento Kings. Monte McNair brings instant credibility to the front office from his time with the Rockets and should help the Kings start the long climb out of NBA purgatory.

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