Pistons Stun NBA With Monty Williams Firing Despite $65 Million Remaining on Contract

Pistons Stun NBA With Monty Williams Firing Despite $65 Million Remaining on Contract
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The Detroit Pis­tons made major waves in the NBA today by fir­ing head coach Mon­ty Williams despite over $65 mil­lion left on his record-set­ting six-year contract. 

Williams led the team to a league-worst 14–68 record in his first sea­son, fail­ing to turn the fran­chise around as hoped.

The Pis­tons had high expec­ta­tions when sign­ing Williams to the largest coach­ing deal in NBA his­to­ry pri­or to the 2023–24 season.

How­ev­er, the team set the record for longest los­ing streak in a sin­gle year and tied the all-time record held by the 76ers across two sea­sons. New team pres­i­dent Tra­jan Lang­don was­n’t sat­is­fied with the lack of improve­ment and decid­ed to part ways.

Williams’ fir­ing con­tin­ues a tur­bu­lent coach­ing career that saw major suc­cess with the Suns fol­lowed by an abrupt departure. 

He led Phoenix to the NBA Finals in 2021 and had the best record in the league the fol­low­ing year, though they lost in the play­offs both times. Williams’ Coach of the Year award was­n’t enough to save his job with the Pis­tons after their abysmal campaign.

With over $65 mil­lion still owed on Williams’ con­tract, the Pis­tons’ deci­sion to move on rep­re­sents one of the most expen­sive coach­ing changes in sports his­to­ry. It remains to be seen if Williams will get anoth­er head coach­ing oppor­tu­ni­ty so soon after being fired with such a mas­sive pay­day remaining.

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