DETROIT — Move over Greg Popovich, there's a new highest-paid head coach in the NBA.
According to multiple reports, former Phoenix Suns head coach Monty Williams has agreed to a six-year deal to become the next head coach of the Detroit Pistons. The Athletic's Shams Charania reports the deal is worth $72 million, while ESPN's Adrian Wojnarowski reports the deal is worth $78.5 million.
Charania added that the deal also includes team options and incentives that could take the total length up to eight years and could play Williams up to $100 million.
Williams will now go from coaching a core in Phoenix that includes Devin Booker, Kevin Durant, Chris Paul, and Deandre Ayton to a young team that includes 2021 #1 overall pick Cade Cunningham, 2022 #5 overall pick Jaden Ivey, and the #5 overall pick in this year's NBA Draft, which will be held on June 22 in Brooklyn, New York.
Williams' new average salary of between $12-13 million per year puts him just ahead of his mentor, Spurs head coach Popovich, as the highest-paid head coach in the NBA. Popovich makes $11.5 million per year. Williams was paid $7 million per year with the Suns.
Williams will now be tasked with taking Detroit's young core to the next level, much as he did with the Suns.
The Pistons, who are in the midst of a 14-game playoff losing streak (the longest in NBA postseason history, according to ESPN) have not made the Playoffs since 2019 when they were swept by the Milwaukee Bucks in the first round. Detroit has just two playoff appearances since 2010.
Detroit has won three NBA titles, with the most recent coming in 2004.
Williams coached the Suns for four years, taking them to the playoffs three times, including one appearance in the NBA Finals. Williams had an overall record of 194-115 in Phoenix and was named the NBA Coach of the Year in 2022 after leading the Suns to the best regular season record in franchise history (64-18).
The Williams era in the Valley will be remembered for the undefeated run in the NBA Bubble in 2020 that brought the Suns to the brink of the playoffs, ending a decade-long playoff drought and winning the 2021 Western Conference Finals before coming up two games short in the NBA Finals to the Bucks.
Social Media reaction
Since the news of Williams' record-breaking deal broke, fans and members of the media have been reacting on social media. Here's a look at some of the best tweets.