Suns fire coach Alvin Gentry after 13-28 start
Phoenix, AZ, United States (4E Sports) – The Phoenix Suns have fired head coach Alvin Gentry after a disappointing 13-28 start that landed them in last place in the Western Conference.
In a press statement, the Suns said they will name an interim head coach in the next 24-48 hours.
“I have grown so much under @AlvinGentry. I wish him and his family the best. He’s a great coach and a better man,” Suns forward-center Channing Frye said on his Twitter account.
Suns forward Jared Dudley later re-tweeted Frye’s message.
The Suns have struggled since losing guard Steve Nash to the Los Angeles Lakers. They acquired Michael Beasley and Wesley Johnson in the offseason but the two have struggled with their new team.
After their home loss to the Milwaukee Bucks Thursday, the Suns have matched the franchise’s worst midpoint record since the 1987-88 team went 13-28.
Gentry had a late-night meeting with Suns managing partner Robert Sarver and president of basketball operations Lon Babby but a decision to replace him wasn’t reached. The move to fire Gentry happened Friday morning.
The Suns have lost 13 of their past 15 games and 20 of their past 26 games, falling to last in the Western Conference and the fourth-worst record in the NBA, ahead of the Cleveland Cavaliers, Charlotte Bobcats and the Washington Wizards.
The 58-year-old Gentry was in the final contract year of his contract and the Suns will owe him $1.2 million for the remainder of it.
He became the team’s interim coach during the 2009 All-Star weekend in Phoenix when Terry Porter was fired during his first season as head coach.
The interim title was lifted in the offseason and Gentry guided the Suns to the 2010 Western Conference Finals in his first full season as head coach, finishing the season with a 28-7 mark.
The Suns contended for a playoff spot the past two seasons but fell short with 40-42 and 33-33 records.
Overall, Gentry had a 158-144 with Phoenix in his fourth stint as a head coach after previous turns with Detroit, Miami and the Los Angeles Clippers.