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  • Hector Amezcua Bee file, 2009 Larry Bird served as the Pacers' basketball president from 2003 to 2012.

  • Larry Bird: The 2012 NBA Executive of the Year and 12-time NBA All-Star didn't work this past season after stepping down as the Indiana Pacers' president of basketball operations.

Bird in mix to lead Kings' basketball operations

Published: Thursday, Jun. 6, 2013 - 12:00 am | Page 1C
Last Modified: Monday, Jun. 10, 2013 - 4:02 pm

Kings majority owner Vivek Ranadive has had conversations with NBA legend Larry Bird about running the team's basketball operations, The Bee has learned.

But Ranadive did not meet with Bird on Wednesday, a team source said, contrary to an online report.

As Ranadive continues to consider candidates to replace basketball president Geoff Petrie, whose contract expires at the end of the month, Jerry Reynolds said Wednesday he will step down as director of player personnel in anticipation of a new front-office team.

"Clearly, with the new GM coming on board, they'll want their own staff," said Reynolds, who has been with the team since its move from Kansas City to Sacramento.

Reynolds said he wants to continue in his role as analyst for the Kings broadcasts.

"I would love to continue to do television," he said. "Obviously, that's not my decision."

Bird, who had been a coach and executive with the Indiana Pacers, was NBA Coach of the Year in 1998 and NBA Executive of the Year in 2012 before stepping down as president of basketball operations.

Many of the players on this season's Pacers team that lost to the Miami Heat in seven games in the Eastern Conference finals were brought in under Bird's regime.

Though he's the biggest name, Bird, 56, is not the sole focus of the search to replace Petrie.

Memphis general manager Chris Wallace, longtime coach and executive Mike Dunleavy, former Golden State player and executive Chris Mullin and current Golden State assistant general manager Travis Schlenk also have been in contact with the Kings. And former Indiana general manager David Morway also is expected to meet with Ranadive soon.

The Kings also have had discussions with Chris Webber about bringing the former forward back in an undetermined role.

If he comes back, Webber would be the third popular former player with the team. Though former guard Bobby Jackson was let go as an assistant coach Tuesday, the Kings said he will remain with the team in another role. Former guard Mitch Richmond is a minority investor with the new ownership group.

New coach Michael Malone is still assembling his staff, with Malone's father, longtime coach Brendan Malone, the only confirmed member.

Ohio State assistant coach Chris Jent confirmed in a text message to the Columbus Dispatch that he has been in contact with Malone about an assistant coaching job.

Jent and Malone worked together with the Cleveland Cavaliers. Jent is noted for helping players, including LeBron James, with their shooting.

Malone also had discussions with former New York Knicks star center Patrick Ewing, who has coached for Orlando and Houston since his Hall of Fame playing career ended.

Ewing interviewed to be the lead assistant for Steve Clifford in Charlotte on Wednesday and reportedly is the frontrunner for the job.

Follow The Bee's Jason Jones on Twitter @mr_jasonjones and read more about the team at www.sacbee.com/kings.

© Copyright The Sacramento Bee. All rights reserved.

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