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NBA Rumors: Luke Walton On Hot Seat Amid Kings' Four-Game Losing Streak

NBA Rumors: Luke Walton On Hot Seat Amid Four-Game Losing Streak

Luke Walton's job is on the line right now, as the Sacramento Kings have struggled to find their touch in a season that had a ton of hope. After landing defensive specialist Davion Mitchell in the 2021 NBA Draft and adding a veteran like Tristan Thompson to join De'Aaron Fox, Buddy Hield, and Tyrese Haliburton; Sacramento looked ready to fight for a play-in tournament spot. 

But the team ranks 11th in the Western Conference and are going through a 4-game losing streak which is setting the alarms at Golden 1 Center. This isn't a good look for the team or its head coach, who could be leaving the franchise if things stay the same. 

According to Shams Charania of The Athletic, Walton is on the hot seat again and he won't have the same freedom he had last season. 

The pressure is mounting on Sacramento Kings coach Luke Walton — again.

With the Kings (5-8) in the midst of a four-game losing streak heading into a Monday night game at Detroit, sources say the third-year coach’s job status will likely be in peril soon if the current slide continues. The Kings, who started the season 5-4 before falling to Indiana, Phoenix, San Antonio and Oklahoma City, are determined to break their 15-year playoff drought, the NBA’s longest, and Walton won’t be given the same leeway to turn things around as he was last season. Especially when it comes to extended losing streaks.

This is hardly the first time Walton’s status has been uncertain.

Last season, after the Kings won seven of eight games in late January and early February, there was a sense from those close to the situation that owner Vivek Ranadivé might make a playoff berth an unofficial qualifier for Walton to keep his job. But that edict never came, even after the Kings had a nine-game losing streak in February and another of the same length less than two months later.

This doesn't look good for Walton. He was expected to lead a young franchise to fight for a playoffs spot, but so far, he hasn't succeeded. This season looked more promising for the Kings and ranking 11th doesn't seem bad. Then again, they want to make a statement and show they can have a positive record while becoming a playoff team. 

Tonight, they'll face the 3-9 Detroit Pistons. On Wednesday, they'll visit a direct rival in Minnesota. If they can't beat these two teams, Walton's situation will get a lot worse. Who knows, perhaps the Kings finish this week without their head coach.