Sometimes finishing in second place is good enough. That appears to be the case for Phoenix Suns assistant coach Kevin Young, who is remaining with the team even though Frank Vogel got the job as the Suns head coach.
Suns associate HC Kevin Young will stay on new coach Frank Vogel’s staff for a deal that’ll make him the league’s highest paid assistant, sources tell ESPN. Young was a finalist for job that Vogel landed with Phoenix.
— Adrian Wojnarowski (@wojespn) June 3, 2023
Young, who had been an associate head coach on Monty Williams' staff with the Suns, is clearly highly thought of within the organization. Once Williams was dismissed after the Suns dropped their second round playoff series with the Denver Nuggets, Young was given consideration to be the next Phoenix head coach.
Vogel was named to that position, but Young is remaining with the team. NBA insider Adrian Wojnarowski reported that his sources have said Young will be the highest paid assistant coach in the NBA.
The Suns have had disappointing playoff finishes in each of the past two seasons. They dropped the series to the Nuggets in 6 games, and last year's finish was even more disappointing. The Suns had the best record in the league in 2021-22 with a 64-18 mark, but were drummed out of the playoffs in the second round by the Dallas Mavericks in 7 games. They lost the finale in that series by 33 points at home, and that shocking defeat may have had an impact on this year's team.
Obviously, Suns management does not hold Kevin Young responsible for the team's playoff failures or they would not have brought him back in the fold. Vogel clearly had success with the Lakers when they won the NBA championship in 2020, and he had previous head coaching experience with the Indiana Pacers and Orlando Magic.