Frank Vogel finalizing deal to become Phoenix Suns next head coach

Los Angeles Lakers head coach Frank Vogel in the first half of an basketball game Sunday, April...
Los Angeles Lakers head coach Frank Vogel in the first half of an basketball game Sunday, April 10, 2022, in Denver. (AP Photo/David Zalubowski)(David Zalubowski | AP)
Published: Jun. 2, 2023 at 9:36 AM MST|Updated: Jun. 2, 2023 at 10:07 AM MST
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PHOENIX (3TV/CBS 5/AP) -- The Phoenix Suns are planning to hire Frank Vogel as the next head coach, the team has confirmed to Arizona’s Family sports director Mark McClune. Vogel and the Suns are reportedly finalizing a five-year, $31 million contract.

The 49-year-old Vogel has been the coach of the Indiana Pacers, Orlando Magic and Los Angeles Lakers during his career and now moves to the Suns, where he’ll try to help the franchise win its first title in its 55-year history. Vogel led the Lakers to an NBA title in 2020 when the league finished its season in the Florida bubble. He has a 431-389 career record over 11 seasons and a 49-39 mark in the playoffs.

Phoenix fired Monty Williams on May 13 despite four successful seasons, including an NBA Finals appearance in 2021 and a coach of the year award in 2022. But the Suns also experienced two straight embarrassing playoff exits — trailing by 30 points at halftime of elimination games at home. Williams has since been hired by the Detroit Pistons in a deal making him the highest-paid coach in NBA history.

New Suns owner Mat Ishbia hasn’t been shy about shaking up the franchise since he took over in February, adding 13-time All-Star Kevin Durant in a blockbuster trade deadline deal. Despite the bold move, the Suns lost in the second round of the playoffs to the Denver Nuggets.

Now Ishbia has overseen a coaching change and it remains to be seen how aggressive the front office will be in reshaping the roster. The assumption is that three-time All-Star Devin Booker — who averaged nearly 36 points per game in a brilliant postseason performance — and Durant will be back.

The rest of the roster is in flux. The biggest questions surround 12-time All-Star point guard Chris Paul and former No. 1 draft pick Deandre Ayton, who were both out with injuries by the end of the playoffs.

The 38-year-old Paul was solid when he was on the court for the Suns this season, but his body gave out again in the playoffs and he missed the final four games with a strained left groin. He’s under contract for next season with a partially guaranteed deal.

The 24-year-old Ayton was ineffective in the team’s second-round series against the Nuggets, averaging 10.8 points and 8.2 rebounds, which were both well below his season and career averages. He suffered a rib contusion in Game 5 and watched the final game of the season from the bench.

The news was first reported by NBA insiders Shams Charania and Adrian Wojnarowski.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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