Nuggets pick up Karl's option; deal through '09-10
DENVER -- Denver Nuggets coach George Karl had his option picked up by the team Tuesday, extending his contract through the 2009-10 season.
Financial terms were not disclosed. In January 2005, Karl signed a six-year contract with a team option after the third year.
Karl is 76-46 with the Nuggets, guiding them to a pair of postseason berths. He was a remarkable 32-8 after taking over the team midway through the 2004-05 season and guided Denver to a 44-38 record and the Northwest Division title, the franchise's first crown in 18 years.
"We feel this is a very good day for the Nuggets organization," Nuggets owner Stan Kroenke said in a statement. "As we've said all along, we're committed to building a championship-caliber team. The cornerstone of all championship teams is excellent coaches and players, and a passionate fan base. We believe today's announcement, coupled with the moves we've made throughout the offseason, will take us closer to achieving our ultimate goal."
The Nuggets are the fifth team for Karl, 55, who did his best work with the Seattle SuperSonics in the 1990s. His teams won at least 57 games in six straight seasons and reached the 1996 NBA Finals, losing to the mighty Chicago Bulls.
Karl has a 784-545 record in parts of 18 seasons with Cleveland, Golden State, Seattle, Milwaukee and Denver. He has not had a losing campaign since 1987-88 with Golden State.
A disciple of Dean Smith at North Carolina, Karl also guided Seattle in 1993 and Milwaukee in 2001 within one win of the NBA Finals.
A prostate cancer survivor, Karl played in the old ABA, where he developed an affinity for the Mile High City.
"I've always had a strong affection for Denver dating to my ABA days and living here has only made that stronger," he said. "The Nuggets have great ownership, a committed front office and a collection of coaches and players that I think can be special. I look forward to continuing what we've started."
Under Karl, Nuggets forward Carmelo Anthony has developed into one of the top young players in the NBA.