SACRAMENTO — As the Kings prepared Thursday night for a nationally televised game against the Los Angeles Clippers, the team was thrust into the spotlight again with a report that head coach Dave Joerger had asked assistant general manager Brandon Williams to leave the morning’s shootaround at the Golden 1 Center.
“My job is to make sure we’re as prepared as we can be for the task in front of us and to try to limit as much distraction as possible,” Joerger later said.
Williams reportedly left with general manager Vlade Divac.
Divac addressed the situation in a statement released later in the day saying, “I have advised my front office and coaching staff to not focus on drama and rumors, but instead to focus on continuing to develop our young and exciting team. And that’s what we’re going to do.”
Coach Joerger left no doubt that this was no rumor at his pre-game press conference Thursday evening.
“When you sign up and you want to be in this business this is a part of it. Winning, losing, being out in front of the media three times a day, making decisions,” Joerger said. “I love the last two minutes of a game more than anybody around, I think that’s my drug and my thrill. And for that, you get to deal with some stuff, and I’m OK.”
Joerger admitted he talked with his team about the situation.
He was not asked if he was upset that the team had not disciplined Williams for allegedly leaking the story, as reported, and Divac did not address it either.
Kings broadcaster and former player Doug Christie gave FOX40 his perspective on the situation.
“It’s unfortunate by all means,” he said. “But you know what, adversity does a lot of different things and for this team to face adversity and continue to win, I think it says a lot about their character.”