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#pounditMonday, June 24, 2024

Report: Kenny Atkinson the leading candidate for 1 head coach job

Kenny Atkinson in a suit

Oct 27, 2019; Memphis, TN, USA; Brooklyn Nets head coach Kenny Atkinson during the game between the Nets and the Grizzlies at the FedExForum. Mandatory Credit: Jerome Miron-USA TODAY Sports

Kenny Atkinson’s stint as the head coach of the Brooklyn Nets was not all that successful, but one team might be willing to give him another shot.

Atkinson is the leading candidate to become the next head coach of the Cleveland Cavaliers, Jason Lloyd of The Athletic reports. Floyd says New York Knicks associate head coach Johnnie Bryant is also a name to watch.

The Cavaliers fired JB Bickerstaff earlier this week after he coached the team for four-plus seasons. The Cavs had been on an upward trend under Bickerstaff. They made the playoffs last year for the first time since LeBron James left in 2018. While they lost in the first round a year ago, they made it to the Eastern Conference semifinals this year and fell to the Boston Celtics in five games.

The belief is that Cleveland wants a candidate with NBA head coaching experience, and the 56-year-old Atkinson was immediately viewed as one of the favorites after Bickerstaff was let go.

Atkinson went 118-190 as the head coach of the Brooklyn Nets from 2016-2020. He led the team to the postseason just once, where they lost in the first round. Atkinson has since worked as an assistant for the Los Angeles Clippers and Golden State Warriors, with whom he won an NBA title two years ago.


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