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Hawks assistant Kenny Atkinson hired as Brooklyn Nets head coach

Mike Budenholzer will be losing a key member of his staff.

Bob Donnan-USA TODAY Sports

Update: Mike Budenholzer has released the following statement concerning Atkinson and his job with the Nets: "I'm very happy for Kenny and excited that he's earned the opportunity to be a head coach. His competitiveness, knowledge and feel for the game, and passion for player development are all at a high level and will serve him well as a head coach. With him and Sean in place, the Nets have a very strong foundation to build on."


The Mike Budenholzer era has been a smashing success for the Atlanta Hawks. As a result, it was only a matter of time before NBA teams began picking off assistant coaches from Budenholzer's staff and anointing them with head coaching jobs. First, Quin Snyder landed with the Utah Jazz, and now, the Brooklyn Nets have hired lead assistant Kenny Atkinson as the team's next head coach.

Brooklyn announced the move on Sunday afternoon, even as the Hawks are in the midst of a playoff run. Atkinson's name has been associated with many lists of fast-rising assistant coaches around the league, and with the Nets searching for a new voice to replace Lionel Hollins moving forward, the partnership makes a great deal of sense.

It will be very interesting as to how this move affects Atlanta's coaching staff, both immediately (Update: Atkinson will remain through the playoff run) and in the future, but for now, congratulations to Kenny Atkinson on his new gig.