Leading Off

New town, new team for Pete D’Alessandro and Michael Malone

The Sacramento Kings former general manager Pete D’Alessandro, left, and former head coach Michael Malone talk before an NBA Summer League game against Toronto at COX Pavilion in Las Vegas.
The Sacramento Kings former general manager Pete D’Alessandro, left, and former head coach Michael Malone talk before an NBA Summer League game against Toronto at COX Pavilion in Las Vegas. hamezcua@sacbee.com

It appears Pete D’Alessandro’s new role as the Denver Nuggets’ senior vice president of business and team operations doesn’t include a say on the team’s coach.

Just days after the former Kings general manager left Sacramento to join Denver’s front office, the Nuggets named Michael Malone on Monday as their new coach.

That’s the same Michael Malone who was fired as the Kings’ coach by D’Alessandro last December in a nasty and public separation that essentially derailed a promising season.

For the sake of Malone and Nuggets fans, let’s hope D’Alessandro won’t have influence on who gets fired in Denver.

▪ There’s a strong chance Tuesday night that the city of Cleveland will witness the NBA Finals’ championship celebration at Quicken Loans Arena for the second time. It’s just unfortunate for Cavaliers fans that Stephen Curry and the rest of the Warriors will be dancing and kissing the Larry O’Brien Trophy, as the San Antonio Spurs did in 2007.

▪ You don’t see this often, but while the Warriors should win the Finals, LeBron James will become the first Finals MVP on a losing team since Jerry West and the Los Angeles Lakers lost to the Boston Celtics in 1969. Can you think of one Warrior who deserves the award more than James, who has averaged 36.6 points, 12.4 rebounds and 8.8 assists in the series?

▪ Bud Black became the third major-league manager fired this season when the Padres dismissed the former Giants pitcher Monday in his ninth season in San Diego. When the front office spends big bucks on free agents and makes blockbuster trades in the offseason, it expects a better record than .500.

▪ Will Boston’s John Farrell be the fourth manager fired? Since winning the World Series in his first season (2013), Farrell’s Red Sox have a combined record of 98-129. Around Kenmore Square in Boston, that’s called “Wicked Weak.”

Victor Contreras: (916) 326-5527, vcontreras@sacbee.com, @sacbeevictor

Playbook

  • WHAT TO WATCH: NBA Finals, Golden State at Cleveland, 6 p.m., Ch.10: The Warriors can win their first championship since 1975.
  • TWITTER CHATTER: “Add me to the group happy to see Michael Malone back as an NBA head coach. Great respect for the man.” – Gary Gerould @ggerould
  • ON THIS DATE: On June 16, 1996, the Chicago Bulls beat the Seattle SuperSonics 87-75 in Game 6 of the NBA Finals to earn their fourth championship in six years. Michael Jordan became the first four-time Finals MVP.
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