Kenny Atkinson spent four years as the Nets head coach before his abrupt ouster, building the superstar-worthy foundation that Steve Nash inherited.
On Friday, two-plus years later, he returned to the rarified ranks of NBA head coaches, reportedly agreeing to a four-year deal to take over the Hornets.
But before he takes over in Charlotte, he’ll try to earn a ring with Golden State.
Much has been made of rookie head coach Ime Udoka leaving the Nets bench to guide the Celtics into the NBA Finals, his Boston success proving he was long overdue for his opportunity. But Atkinson’s under-the-radar work as Steve Kerr’s assistant helped the Warriors to these Finals, showing he deserved this second head coaching job – and likely didn’t deserve to lose the first one he had in Brooklyn.