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Kings GM Vlade Divac says he, Luke Walton share the ‘same soul’ when it comes to basketball

Vlade Divac, Luke Walton

Sacramento Kings general manager Vlade Divac is excited about having new head coach Luke Walton on board, even saying that he and Walton “have the same soul about basketball.”

Divac welcomed Walton to the Kings organization. He was full of praise for the former Los Angeles Lakers tactician and said he believes they can take Sacramento to the next level.

Sacramento hired Walton on April 13 — merely two days after they fired Dave Joerger and less than 24 hours since the Los Angeles Lakers parted ways with Walton.

According to Jason Anderson of The Sacramento Bee, the Kings gave Luke Walton a four-year deal after he met with Vlade Divac in California’s capital.

Furthermore, in the report, Divac said that he wants a head coach who fits the Kings’ uptempo style of play.

“Our new coach has to bring, first of all, the style we had last year. This is the Kings’ style. We’ve got to play that way. I want my coach to be right next to me and we can talk about the team and what’s out there for us to make our team better. I want my coach on the same page.”

Based on Divac’s most recent statements, he and Walton are on the same page from the get-go. The two were teammates with the Lakers during the 2004-05 NBA season — Divac’s 16th and Walton’s second.

Divac and Walton met at a crossroads of their respective NBA careers. Now, they continue their professional relationship as members of the Sacramento front office and coaching staff, respectively.

Walton takes over the reins of a young Kings team which finished with a 39-43 (.476) record in 2018-19.

With a core featuring Buddy Hield, Harrison Barnes, Bogdan Bogdanovic, De’Aaron Fox, Marvin Bagley III and Harry Giles III, Sacramento should continue its rise to prominence in the NBA next season and beyond.