Igor Kokoskov has left the NBA Bubble for Fenerbahce Beko Istanbul, his new team as the head coach, in order to be present for their preseason.
You should remember the former Phoenix Suns Head Coach. It was only a season ago that he was calling the shots on the sidelines in the valley during the 2018-19 season. Granted, he only led the team to 19 wins and ultimately got canned but he is looked at fondly, at least by me, from when he was a Suns assistant coach.
After spending this season as an assistant for the Sacramento Kings under Luke Walton, he is moving on to a greener pasture and Walton is nothing but happy for him.
“I’d like to congratulate Igor on his promotion to head coach of Fenerbahce and thank him for his dedicated time with the Kings. He has been a valuable member of my coaching staff and his natural ability to guide our players will continue to inspire the team as we move forward in Orlando. We wish him all the best.”
Igor has been coaching since 1992 and spent his first five years overseas with his first head coach gig being for OKK Beograd during the 1995-96 season. He was an assistant in the NBA for multiple teams, including the Detroit Pistons where he won a championship ring in 2004.
This could be a great opportunity for him as he will be coaching at the helm of a Turkish contender, for a European basketball powerhouse, though he will have big shoes to fill as the successor to Zeljko Obradovic.
Kings guard Bogdan Bogdanovic played for Fenerbahce and Obradovic for three seasons prior to coming to the NBA and he feels Kokoskov was an ideal hire and that he has a chance at something great.
“I told him it may be a unique opportunity in life. Every assistant coach wants to be head coach and Igor is a head coach, we all know that. I’m glad they invited him, that means they appreciated him. He has the quality to make them an extremely good team. He’s hungry for success because leading such a championship team that invests money is a huge advantage.”
It might not be in the NBA but Igor Kokoskov is a head coach again and I’m very excited for him.
Congrats on the promotion coach and best of luck in your new spot.