And then there were four.
League sources confirmed to NBC Sports California earlier this week that the Kings requested interviews with six prospective front office candidates. Less than 24 hours later, Trajan Langdon removed his name, reducing the list to five.
Late Friday night, the Kings’ search reportedly took another huge hit.
The Athletic’s Shams Charania reported, citing sources, that Miami Heat assistant general manager Adam Simon has decided to pull his name from the search, leaving the Kings with just four current candidates for their front office opening.
Simon was always going to be a difficult get for Sacramento. He started as an intern with the Heat in 1995 and has worked with the organization for the last 25 years. He’s performed a variety of roles in Miami and is considered a highly qualified candidate with major upside.
Where do the Kings go from here?
That is a huge question. They have the option of pushing forward with the group that includes Sachin Gupta, Executive VP of Basketball Operations from the Minnesota TImberwolves, Denver Nuggets GM Calvin Booth, Houston Rockets assistant GM Monte McNair and former Atlanta Hawks GM Wes Wilcox.
They could also expand their search and open the job to even more candidates.
According to league sources, there remains confusion amongst potential candidates regarding interim executive VP of basketball operations Joe Dumars. While team sources maintain that any candidate will answer directly to chairman Vivek Ranadivé, there isn’t enough clarity on what Dumars’ role will be moving forward.
Sacramento has plenty of assets and a young star in De’Aaron Fox to build around, but they just posted their 14th consecutive season without an NBA playoff appearance and the seven-year stretch under Ranadivé has not gone as planned.
There is still quality on the list of potential candidates, but transparency is needed moving forward if the Kings are going to lure the type of executive they need to push the franchise to the next level.
Following the resignations of general manager Vlade Divac and assistant GM Peja Stojakovic, the Kings are currently running the organization with a skeleton crew while they work toward finding a new front man to lead the team into the 2020-21 season.
This is an incredibly important offseason for the Kings. Fox is eligible for a max-money extension. Bogdan Bogdanovic is a restricted free agent and the Kings are armed with the No. 12 overall pick, as well as three second round selections.