Thursday, May 11, 2006

Washington Wizards coach Eddie Jordan, who has one year remaining on his contract, has been identified by the Sacramento Kings as a candidate to replace Rick Adelman, two league sources confirmed yesterday.

The Kings, who did not extend Adelman’s contract or those of his four assistants, have not publicly identified any candidates, and it is believed several names will surface as potential hires.

The Kings are also precluded from having any contact with Jordan. If they wish to speak with him while he is under contract, they must first get permission from the Wizards.

Jordan, who this season coached the Wizards to their second consecutive playoff appearance, has one more year left on his approximately $12million deal.

Wizards president of basketball operations Ernie Grunfeld said Jordan’s future with the team beyond this season would be addressed during summer meetings that would include himself, Jordan and team owner Abe Pollin.

Earlier this week, Jordan said he intended to honor the remainder of his contract.

“It’s going to be up to Mr. Pollin and Ernie to move in any direction after that,” Jordan said. “I have a contract that I have to honor and I have another year on that contract.”

The Kings fired Adelman on Tuesday, shortly after they lost to San Antonio in the first round of the Western Conference playoffs. Adelman, the most successful coach in Kings history, is 14th on the NBA’s career list with 752 victories.

Jordan began his coaching career in Sacramento when he took over after the Kings fired Garry St. Jean near the end of the 1996-97 season. The following season, Jordan led the Kings to a 27-55 record. Sacramento hired Adelman before the 1998-99 season.

Jordan took the Wizards from 25-57 in his first season in 2003 to 45-37 in his second. The Wizards made the playoffs that year for the first time in eight seasons, reaching the second round for the first time since 1982 before losing to Miami. This season, despite multiple roster moves, the Wizards finished 42-40 but were eliminated by Cleveland in six games in the first round. Jordan’s regular-season coaching record is 145-198.

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