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Kings hires Monte McNair as Vlade Divac replacement for GM post

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The Sacramento Kings have found their next general manager. On Wednesday, The Athletic’s Sam Amick and Shams Charania reported that the franchise will hire Houston Rockets assistant GM Monte McNair to replace Vlade Divac, who stepped down on Aug. 14.

McNair, who hails from Southern California and played football at Princeton, joined Houston’s front office in 2007 as an analyst. In 2013, he was promoted to director of basketball operations, then vice president of basketball operations in 2015 and eventually Daryl Morey’s second-in-command in Oct. 2018.

During his time in Houston, McNair worked in player evaluation, acquisitions, draft scouting, and, of course, analytics.

“Monte has been absolutely critical to the success of the Rockets over his long tenure,” Morey said of McNair. “His unique combination of analytical skills and ability to work with our coaching staff was a key driver in our record-breaking season last year.”

In addition to McNair, the Kings search included Minnesota Timberwolves Executive Vice President Sachin Gupta (who still may come aboard), Miami Heat Assistant GM Adam Simo, Denver Nuggets GM Calvin Booth, New Orleans Pelicans GM Trajan Langdon, and former Atlanta Hawks GM Wes Wilcox.

McNair will be tasked with ending the franchise’s woeful streak of missing the postseason in 14 consecutive seasons, and not since Ranadive purchased the franchise in 2013. Sacramento has employed 10 different head coaches during the unfortunate streak.

He’ll also have to evaluate head coach Luke Walton, who led the team to a 31-41 record in his first season in Sacramento.

Basketball Hall of Famer and former Detroit Pistons player and president of basketball operations Joe Dumars had assumed the role of interim VP of basketball operations after Divac’s removal.