Kenny Atkinson should be on the Knicks radar
Kenny Atkinson "mutually parted ways" with the Brooklyn Nets on Saturday morning leaving the entire league scratching their heads. What Kenny was able to do with the Nets in 3 1/2 season is nothing short of remarkable. In 2018-19 he lead a Brooklyn Nets team with no expectations to the first round of the playoffs lead by young upcoming stars such as D'angelo Russell, Spencer Dinwiddie and Caris LeVert (injured). He was also a big part of the Nets "culture" building that ultimately help them land Kevin Durant and Kyrie Irving.
Lets talk about why I think Kenny Atkinson should be welcomed back to Manhattan with open arms:
Development: It's no secret what Kenny did in Brooklyn. Although -- it's fair to mention that Sean Marks played a big part of Kenny's success. He found a journeyman in Spencer Dinwiddie who blossomed and also rolled the dice on D'Angelo Russell, who at the time was having his own issues in LA. While Sean Marks was the invoice manager, Atkinson was the cook in the kitchen that unlocked the potential of the youth over in Brooklyn. His grooming of those young point guards is what stands out the most and that would be beneficial for the Knicks, as they are continuing to search for their own.
Culture: From being a pretty bad franchise (like the Knicks) to turning it around in just a couple of years is exactly what the Knicks need at the moment. Except -- I think the Knicks are currently in a better position than the Nets were in. Leon Rose has a ton of assets to work with and one of the Knicks main problems have been drafting and scouting the right players. It's obvious that they can't attract free agents, so If Rose can use some of the ammunition he's been given and turn that into gold, Kenny Atkinson has shown he can help develop/scout AND build a culture.
Will do what's best for the team: It was being reported that Kenny Atkinson was let go because he didn't want to start DeAndre Jordan over Jarrett Allen (Laughable). Statistically the Nets are a better team with Jarrett Allen on the floor over Jordan -- I'm sure Kenny Atkinson new that. He didn't care about hurting feelings, he didn't care that Jordan was best friends with KD and Kyrie, he simply wanted to do what was best for the team and grooming Jarrett Allen is way more important than starting a washed up DeAndre Jordan. Now granted, this league is turning more and more into a players league but for a young group like the Knicks, who lack stardom, that's not the case.
The bottom line is the Knicks should seriously consider hiring Kenny Atkinson this summer as their next head coach. Lets see what Leon Rose has up his sleeve.