Monty Williams proved he was a great coach over his four years with the Phoenix Suns. Detroit realized that too as the Pistons just gave Williams a historic coaching contract.
According to ESPN, Williams agreed to a six-year, $78.5 million deal to become the team’s new head coach. His new contract is the largest in NBA history.
With an annual salary of $13.08 million, Williams leapfrogs the 2022-23 top 10 highest-paid NBA head coaches including Gregg Popovich ($11.5 million), the Warriors’ Steve Kerr ($9.5 million), former Sixers head coach Doc Rivers ($8.5 million), the Heat’s Erik Spoelstra ($8.5 million), former Milwaukee Bucks coach Mike Budenholzer ($8 million), former Raptors and new 76ers head coach Nick Nurse ($8 million), former Nets head coach Steve Nash ($8 million), the Mavericks’ Jason Kidd ($8 million), the Pacers’ Rick Carlisle ($7.25 million) and the Clippers Tyron Lue ($6.5 million) to become the league’s highest-paid coach.
Most interesting about this list is that three (Rivers, Budenholzer and Nash) are currently unemployed.
When The Athletic’s Shams Charania first dropped the news, he reported Williams’ deal was for six years, $72 million. But a short while later, ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski reported the new astounding sum of $78.5 million.
This is great news for a coach who, despite leading the Suns to the NBA Finals in the 2020-21 season and being named the 2022 NBA Coach of the Year, was shockingly fired only two short weeks ago after being bounced in the Western Conference semifinals by the Nuggets.
Williams was high on Detroit’s list, but he reportedly informed interested teams that he was unsure about coaching next season.
While Detroit took a step back, their pursuit was undeterred.
So instead of letting Monty ponder his next move, they enacted an aggressive courtship that, according to Charania included an action plan for how he could elevate the young team, a private plane to pick him up and take him to team owner Tom Gores’ house and an offer he couldn’t refuse.
A week later, Detroit stole the sports news day.
This historic contract, which should be finalized next week, gives the Pistons a leader with a winning record (367-336) and who has experience working with young teams and players, as evidenced during his time with New Orleans (2010 – 2015).
And most importantly for the Pistons, it reinvigorates the Motown fanbase.
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