They’ll make that push as lead assistant Igor Kokoskov has one foot out the door.
Adrian Wojnarowski of ESPN:
Sacramento Kings assistant Igor Kokoskov has agreed in principle to become the next head coach of Fenerbahce in Istanbul, sources tell ESPN. Kokoskov had been the Suns head coach and is currently the Serbian national coach.
— Adrian Wojnarowski (@wojespn) July 2, 2020
Jason Jones of the The Athletic:
Kokoskov will still finish out the season with the Kings and be in Orlando, per source https://t.co/Q6LFbaCi0z
— Jason Jones (@mr_jasonjones) July 2, 2020
Kokoskov had a rough go in the NBA spotlight. After working his way up the coaching ladder and becoming the Suns’ head coach in 2018-19, he got fired after only one season. Phoenix gave him an ill-equipped roster, notably passing on Luka Doncic in the draft – perhaps despite the input of Kokoskov, who coached Doncic on the Slovenian national team. Maybe Kokoskov wasn’t a good-enough coach. He didn’t build a strong affirmative case. But getting only season in his first head-coaching job was a tough break.
Fenerbahce (Turkey) is a premier overseas job. Kokoskov will succeed a legend in Zeljko Obradovic, who recently drew attention for this, um, motivational speech.
For Sacramento, the timing is tricky. Luke Walton is still in charge. But with traveling parties limited for the resumption at Disney World, teams need the coaches in attendance to pull extra duty. Maybe Kokoskov is up for it. It’d also be completely natural if he’s at least somewhat distracted by his next job.