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Suns take 'interim' tag off coach Gentry's title

Posted May 9 2009 6:28PM

PHOENIX (AP) -- As expected, the Phoenix Suns are sticking with coach Alvin Gentry.

Suns general manager Steve Kerr removed the interim tag from Gentry's title on Saturday, calling him "the right man to lead our team into the future."

Kerr said when the season ended that his first order of business was to re-sign Gentry, who took over the struggling Suns on Feb. 16 after coach Terry Porter was fired just four months into his first season with the club.

Gentry's contract is for two years with a third-year option.

Gentry returned the Suns to the freeform style of Porter's predecessor Mike D'Antoni, guiding the team to an 18-13 record despite the absence of injured All-Star Amare Stoudemire for all but one game.

Phoenix finished 46-36, the second-best record of any team that failed to make the playoffs since the field expanded to 16 teams 25 years ago.

Gentry joined the Suns as an assistant to D'Antoni in 2004 and stayed on when Porter was hired following the 2007-08 season.

This is his fourth stint as an NBA head coach. The others were with the Los Angeles Clippers (2000-03), Detroit (1997-200) and Miami (1995).

Gentry, 54, has been in coaching for 30 years, including jobs as an assistant to Larry Brown, Kevin Loughery and Doug Collins.

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