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Nets Name Kenny Atkinson Head Coach

The Brooklyn Nets have hired Atlanta Hawks assistant Kenny Atkinson to be their next head coach, the team announced Sunday.  Atkinson becomes the 21st head coach in franchise history.

“We are thrilled to announce Kenny Atkinson as our new head coach and to welcome him and his family to Brooklyn,” said Nets General Manager Sean Marks. “Kenny’s years of NBA coaching experience working under successful head coaches such as Mike Budenholzer and Mike D’Antoni have provided him with the foundation and experience we were looking for in a head coach. We believe that Kenny’s core principles, leadership,communication skills and exceptional background in player development make him an ideal fit for the culture we are building in Brooklyn.”

Atkinson has spent the past four seasons as an assistant with the Hawks under Budenholzer, making the playoffs each year.  He will continue to coach with the Hawks throughout the duration of their playoff run.

This is a solid hire for the Nets.  It is not a splashy or a sexy move, but it is excellent from a basketball perspective.  In his short time as general manager, Marks is proving that the Nets will do whatever it takes to find sustainable success and continuity within the organization.  Atkinson is also a New York native, having grown up in Northport, Long Island.  That makes him the first Brooklyn Nets coach with local ties.  Nets owner Mikhail Prokhorov also offered his stamp of approval:

“I’d like to extend a personal welcome to Kenny and wish all of us success as we begin a new era at the Brooklyn Nets,” said Prokhorov. “Aside from his tremendous skills and experience, he has the mindset we need to build a winning team day by day, step by step. Together, we can do great things.”

Since moving to Brooklyn in 2012, the Nets have had Avery Johnson, P.J. Carlesimo, Jason Kidd, Lionel Hollins, Tony Brown and now Atkinson serve as the team’s head coach.  The hope within the organization is that Atkinson is the long-term solution for what has been a severely unstable position.


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Jason Goldstein is a co host of the Baseline Jumper NBA podcast, recording every Tuesday night along Ben McDonald. Jason has also spent time as the Basketball Editor at while also handling the Brooklyn Nets Lead Writer duties since October 2015.
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