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Deadspin | Cavs announce Kenny Atkinson as new head coach

Deadspin | Cavs announce Kenny Atkinson as new head coach


April 17, 2023; Sacramento, California, USA; Golden State Warriors assistant coach Kenny Atkinson during the second quarter in game two of the first round of the 2023 NBA playoffs against the Sacramento Kings at Golden 1 Center. Mandatory Credit: Kyle Terada-USA TODAY Sports

The Cleveland Cavaliers formally named Kenny Atkinson as their new head coach on Friday, awarding a five-year deal to the former Golden State Warriors assistant.

Atkinson, 57, will replace J.B. Bickerstaff, fired by the Cavs last month after three straight winning seasons.

“Kenny brings a wealth of experience, a proven track record of player development, and a relentless work ethic that aligns with the vision we have for this franchise,” Cleveland president of basketball operations, Koby Altman said Friday. “His innovative approach will instill a style of play and brand of basketball that will give us a chance for sustainable success and ultimately compete for championships.”

The Cavs decided on Atkinson over New Orleans associate head coach James Borrego.

“This is an incredible opportunity to lead an already talented young roster with an equally bright future,” Atkinson said. “I’ve seen firsthand and had to prepare for this group as an opposing coach, and the task was not easy. I’m so excited to now be on this side of the ledger to help continue moving this team forward.”

Atkinson, the top assistant with the Warriors the past three seasons, went 118-190 in four seasons as the head coach of the Brooklyn Nets from 2016-20. He led the Nets to the playoffs in the 2018-19 campaign.

Atkinson seemingly was hired by the Charlotte Hornets to be their head coach two years but changed his mind and remained with the Warriors.

Bickerstaff compiled a record of 170-159 since replacing John Beilein as Cleveland coach in February 2020, leading the Cavs to the playoffs the past two seasons.

–Field Level Media



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Deadspin | Cavs announce Kenny Atkinson as new head coach
Deadspin | Cavs announce Kenny Atkinson as new head coach

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