Assistant GM Levien leaving Kings

Sacramento Kings assistant general manager Jason Levien has decided to leave the organization, according to NBA front-office sources.

Sources said Thursday that Levien plans to continue working in the NBA but wanted to pursue other opportunities after two seasons with the Kings.

ESPN.com reported last month that Levien was one of several names under consideration for the GM opening in Phoenix created by Steve Kerr’s departure. San Antonio assistant general manager Dennis Lindsey is the reported front-runner for the position, but Suns owner Robert Sarver has said he is considering up to 10 candidates, with former New Jersey Nets general manager Kiki Vandeweghe Milwaukee executive Jeff Weltman also mentioned as likely targets.

A former agent for several NBA players – including Kevin Martin, Luol Deng, Hedo Turkoglu, Udonis Haslem and Sacramento’s Omri Casspi – Levien was recruited to the team side of the game by Kings co-owners Joe and Gavin Maloof and longtime team president Geoff Petrie in 2008 and was hired early in the 2008-09 season.

Upon joining the Kings, Levien was touted as a potential successor for Petrie, who signed a two-year contract extension in December 2009. Since his arrival, Sacramento has primarily focused on creating financial flexibility through trades and rebuilding around newly minted NBA Rookie of the Year Tyreke Evans.

Marc Stein is a senior NBA writer for ESPN.com.