DENVER (AP) — The Denver Nuggets extended the contract of coach Michael Malone after he guided the franchise to its first NBA title, a person familiar with the situation told The Associated Press on Monday.
The person spoke to the AP on condition of anonymity because the team hadn’t announced the extension. No terms of the deal were disclosed.
Hired by Denver in 2015, Malone has steadily helped turn the Nuggets into a contender behind the dynamic twosome of point guard Jamal Murray and two-time NBA MVP Nikola Jokic. Malone has gone 375-272 with the Nuggets, which included earning the best mark in the Western Conference last season.
The Nuggets went 16-4 in their playoff run, culminating in winning the NBA crown in five games over the Miami Heat. Jokic was named the NBA Finals MVP.
Malone was a longtime assistant with New York, Cleveland, New Orleans and Golden State before getting his first head coaching job with Sacramento. He was let go in his second season with the Kings in December 2014.
The 52-year-old Malone has led the Nuggets to the postseason five times since his arrival, including two appearances in the Western Conference Finals. His 37 postseason wins are the most by any coach in franchise history.
He’s the fourth-longest active tenured coach, trailing Golden State’s Steve Kerr, Miami’s Erik Spoelstra and San Antonio’s Gregg Popovich.
Malone is the son of longtime NBA coach Brendan Malone, who died last month. Brendan Malone was one of the driving forces behind the Detroit Pistons “Bad Boys” defenses in the late 1980s and early ’90s.
Michael Malone called his father his biggest fan, mentor and supporter. He said he was thinking of his father when the team raised the championship banner and players received their rings on opening night against LeBron James and the Los Angeles Lakers.
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