NBA

Cavs hiring Warriors assistant Kenny Atkinson as new head coach: Report

Atkinson spent four seasons as a head coach in Brooklyn and three years as an assistant in Golden State

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Steve Kerr and the Golden State Warriors will need a new lead assistant coach for the 2024-25 NBA season.

Kenny Atkinson is set to be hired as the new coach of the Cleveland Cavaliers, ESPN's Adrian Wojnarowski and The Athletic's Shams Charania both reported Monday morning, citing sources.

Wojnarowski reported, citing sources, that Atkinson and the Cavaliers still are working on contract details, with a deal expected to be finalized "soon."

Atkinson spent the last three seasons as Kerr's assistant coach after spending one season with the Los Angeles Clippers.

The 57-year-old Atkinson has one previous head coaching job, having spent four seasons guiding the Brooklyn Nets, where he amassed a 118-190 regular-season record. They reached the NBA playoffs once during his tenure (2018-19) but lost to the Philadelphia 76ers in the first round.

Atkinson had been linked to the Cavaliers' job ever since they fired J.B. Bickerstaff on May 23, and within a few days, he already was viewed as the "leader" for the position.

After joining the Warriors before the 2021-22 season, Atkinson was connected to several head coaching vacancies, including the Sacramento Kings and Los Angeles Lakers in 2022. That summer, he agreed to take the Charlotte Hornets' job before changing his mind and staying with Golden State.

Last summer, Atkinson drew interest from the Atlanta Hawks, Houston Rockets, Milwaukee Bucks and Toronto Raptors before all four franchises went with other candidates.

Now, Atkinson received a second chance to prove himself as an NBA head coach, while Ker and the Warriors search for a new lead assistant.

Drew Dinsick of NBC Sports weighs in on the biggest question marks facing the Knicks, Cavs and Nuggets in 2024-25.
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