Michael Malone rewarded with big contract extension
Nov 13, 2023, 9:50 AM | Updated: 11:04 am
The network reports that Malone’s new deal will make him one of the highest-paid coaches in the league. Mike Singer, formerly of the Denver Post, reports that the contract will be for two years, taking the coach’s deal through the 2026-27 season.
The new contract should keep Malone as Denver’s head coach through Nikola Jokic’s prime. The two-time MVP has only known one coach in the NBA, and so far that partnership has brought the Nuggets a title. Going 16-4 in the playoffs last year, Malone’s Nuggets led by Jokic smoked the competition en route to a championship.
The hot run of play has continued into an 8-2 start on their title defense. In his nine seasons at the hlm, Denver is 375-272 (.580) in the regular season and 37-31 (.554) in the playoffs, with two trips to the conference finals. Malone could top George Karl for the second-most wins in franchise history this season at 423. The number hanging in the rafters is Doug Moe’s 432 wins, the most by a coach in Nuggets history and a mark achievable next season. Only the Milwaukee Bucks have a better record since Malone got the whistle to lead the Nuggets.
Malone will now be thought of in the class of some of the NBA’s best and most longstanding coaches, joining San Antonio’s Gregg Popovich, Miami’s Erik Spoelstra and Golden State’s Steve Kerr.
For Kroenke Sports and Entertainment, the owner of the Nuggets, making Malone one of the most well-off coaches when he began as one of the lowest-paid ones is a big step. This could be a sign of cash being thrown at the winning Nuggets, which could help Malone keep his title-winning staff together into the future.