As a follow-up to the breaking news on the Kings' hiring of Paul Westphal, I wanted to share the confirmation of the news.
I just chatted with Westphal by phone, and he had this to say (and a lot more to come)...
"I'm just very excited about the opportunity. I have been looking for a good opportunity to get back and do what I like to do and I think that the Kings present an exciting challenge for me and I can't wait to get started.
"I'm really happy I got the job, and whatever winding turns it had to take - I don't even know all the winding turns that it took - I'm just happy that they decided I'm the guy for them and I can't wait to get started."
I also talked with Kings co-owner Joe Maloof, who had this (and more in tomorrow's paper) to say...
"I think we've got a gentleman who has a wonderful reputation around the league. He's had a great winning percentage, over 62 percent of his games he's won in the NBA. He has been an experienced coach in the NBA.
"We knew that he was very strong offensively, and that he had all those great teams that scored a lot of points, but you don't get into the NBA FInals (as Westphal's Phoenix team did in the 1992-93 season, losing in six games to Chicago) if you don't teach defense as well. He went through some of his ideas on defense, which made a lot of sense to us."
Maloof went on to break down some of the finer points of Westphal's pitch, which I'll get to in subsequent blogs and, of course, tomorrow's paper. - Sam Amick