Updated at: 06/15/2013 4:05 PM
By JOSH DUBOW
The Sacramento Kings hired Denver executive Pete D’Alessandro as their new general manager on Saturday.
D’Alessandro will replace the departing Geoff Petrie, a team official confirmed on condition of anonymity because there has not been a formal announcement yet. The move was first reported by Yahoo! Sports.
New owner Vivek Ranadive has already hired Mike Malone as the team’s new coach and was looking to replace Petrie, who ran the basketball operations for the Kings since 1994. Petrie’s contract expires at the end of the month and he is helping the new regime prepare for the draft.
D’Alessandro was executive vice president of basketball operations in Denver. The Nuggets already lost general manager Masai Ujiri to Toronto this offseason and coach George Karl was also let go despite leading the team to a franchise-record 57 wins this season before a first-round playoff loss to Golden State.
D’Alessandro has spent nearly a decade in the front offices with Golden State and Denver. His first item of business in Sacramento will be the draft on June 27. The Kings have the seventh pick in the first round.
The Kings also must decide what to do with volatile but talented center DeMarcus Cousins, who has averaged 16.3 points and 9.8 rebounds per game his first three seasons. Cousins has struggled with defense and discipline and was suspended three times last season _ twice by the NBA and once by the team.
Sacramento is coming off a 28-54 season _ the team’s seventh straight under-.500 campaign. This recent rough run follows a stretch when Petrie built one of the league’s top teams that made eight straight playoff appearances and made it to Game 7 of the 2002 Western Conference finals before losing to the Los Angeles Lakers.
Ranadive led the group that bought the team last month from the Maloof family at a total franchise valuation of more than $534 million to keep the franchise in Sacramento. That came after NBA owners blocked the Maloofs’ agreement with investor Chris Hansen to buy and relocate the Kings to Seattle earlier in May.
(Copyright 2013 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)