Sacramento Kings

Kings hire assistant coaches for Luke Walton, Bobby Jackson will stay on staff

Sacramento Kings General Manger Vlade Divac and new head coach Luke Walton speak to the media at Golden 1 Center on Monday, April 15, 2019 in Sacramento.
Sacramento Kings General Manger Vlade Divac and new head coach Luke Walton speak to the media at Golden 1 Center on Monday, April 15, 2019 in Sacramento. pkitagaki@sacbee.com

The Kings have begun to assemble Luke Walton’s coaching staff after several weeks of closed-door meetings with candidates.

A league source told The Sacramento Bee the Kings have hired Bob Beyer, Jesse Mermuys and Roy Rana as assistant coaches. Two or three other coaches will likely be added and Kings great Bobby Jackson will be retained as a member of the player development staff, the source said, speaking on condition of anonymity because the moves had not been formally announced. The hires were first reported by The Athletic’s Sam Amick.

The hiring process has gone on for six weeks since the Kings introduced Walton as their head coach April 15. A week later, former Southern California sports broadcaster Kelli Tennant filed a civil lawsuit accusing Walton of sexual assault, an accusation Walton’s attorney has denied.

It is unclear whether an ongoing investigation into the allegations against Walton hindered the Kings in their search for a coaching staff. A league source told The Bee on Thursday that Kings fans could “expect an announcement soon.”

Beyer, 57, is a well-traveled assistant who first worked in the NBA in 2003. He spent a season with the Toronto Raptors, five seasons with the Orlando Magic, a season with the Golden State Warriors, a season with the Charlotte Bobcats and four seasons with the Detroit Pistons before spending the 2018-19 season with the Oklahoma City Thunder. Beyer worked under Stan Van Gundy in Orlando and Detroit.

Mermuys, 38, is a Tucson, Ariz., native who attended Arizona, Walton’s alma mater. Mermuys led Walton’s AAU program and basketball camp and was a member of his coaching staff with the Los Angeles Lakers for the past three seasons.

Mermuys previously worked as a video coordinator, scout and assistant coach with the Denver Nuggets, Houston Rockets and Raptors, and as head coach and assistant general manager of the NBA G League’s Raptors 905.

Rana, 50, has served as head coach at Ryerson University in Toronto since 2009. He also serves as head coach of the under-18 and under-19 Canadian national teams. The Toronto Globe and Mail once described him as “one of the best high school basketball coaches in Canadian history.”

Jackson, 46, is a Sacramento fan favorite who spent six of his 13 NBA seasons with the Kings. He worked as an assistant coach with the Kings from 2011 to 13 and returned last season in a player development role.

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