When Mike Brown took over on the sidelines as the head coach of the Sacramento Kings, he inherited a broken organization just looking for energy to try and end what had become an inexcusable and overwhelming 16-season playoff drought. With De'Aaron Fox and Domantas Sabonis as his two best players, Brown was able to create the foundation of a new culture in Sacramento, one that would finally put an end to their losing ways. The Kings finished the 2022-23 season with a 48-34 record, resulting in a playoff appearance and Brown being named the NBA Coach of the Year.

One year later, the Kings finished with a 46-36 record, resulting in them having to fight for their lives in the Western Conference Play-In Tournament. After defeating the Golden State Warriors in a very meaningful 9-seed vs. 10-seed game, the Kings fell short of making the playoffs, losing 105-98 to the Zion Williamson-less New Orleans Pelicans. Over the last two seasons, Brown has coached the Kings to a 94-70 record, establishing themselves as a true threat in the West. However, time is not a given in the NBA, especially regarding head coaches.

Originally, Brown signed a four-year contract in 2022 that contained a mutual option between him and the team for the 2025-26 season, according to The Athletic. As a result, next season is the final year in which his contract with Sacramento is guaranteed. Brown, who is seeking long-term stability from the organization he has helped rise from the depths of the Western Conference, has a lot of uncertainties surrounding his future with the Kings.

Their win over the Warriors was meaningful in more ways than one, especially since the Kings were taken down by Golden State in the first round of the playoffs last season. Revenge in this matchup was sweet for the time being, but the Kings were unable to seize their opportunity and claim the 8-seed in the conference when they lost to the Pelicans. As a result, a “wait-and-see” approach for Brown's future now looms large in the minds of those who make decisions for the organization, according to The Athletic.

It would be a shock to see the Kings move on from Brown just after he was awarded the 2022-23 NBA Coach of the Year. But then again, it may not be all that surprising given the nature of coaching in the league today. Job security doesn't exist with NBA coaches. With no extension talks being held between the two sides, Brown enters the 2024-25 season not knowing if he will continue to be in Sacramento.

Mike Brown's future with Kings

Sacramento Kings head coach Mike Brown reacts to a call during the fourth quarter at Golden 1 Center.
Ed Szczepanski-USA TODAY Sports

Although they missed the playoffs, this was still a very successful season for the Kings. They won at least 45 games for the second straight season, the first time they have accomplished such a feat since the 2004-05 and 2005-06 seasons, and Sacramento held a 15-8 record against the six-best teams in the West. The Kings have proven that they can win under Brown's leadership, which is why there is not really much reason to think that the 2024-25 season will be his last in Sacramento.

This organization has been seeking stability for quite some time. Jumping around from head coach to head coach, the Kings have finally found a guy they not only believe in, but his players believe in as well. At this point, the Kings' lack of postseason success is not necessarily Brown's fault, as this problem may fall on the front office.

Outside of Sabonis, the Kings do not have much length to defend the paint. That is not Brown's fault. On offense, the Kings struggled to find consistent production late in the year outside of Fox due to Malik Monk's knee injury. That is not necessarily Brown's fault either.

The Kings will turn their attention to finding upgrades in the offseason, specifically players who can create opportunities for themselves on offense without Fox or Sabonis having to do everything. While adjustments could've been made last season against the Warriors and this year against the Pelicans, blaming Brown for all of this organization's lack of postseason success would be blasphemous.

Brown has put the Kings on the path to success. Now, it is up to the front office to return the favor and get him the talent needed to truly compete at the top of the Western Conference.