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Sun. Jul 14th, 2024

Cavaliers could interview Kenny Atkinson for head coaching job – NBC Sports Bay Area & California

By Vaseline May30,2024

The Cleveland Cavaliers appear very interested in Warriors assistant Kenny Atkinson for their head coaching job.

The Cavaliers have received permission from the Warriors to interview Atkinson for the vacancy, along with New Orleans Pelicans assistant James Borrego, ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski reported Wednesday, citing sources.

Although Atkinson and Borrego are “two top candidates” in Cleveland’s coaching search, The Athletic’s Jason Lloyd reported Sunday, per Wojnarowski, that the Warriors’ top assistant is the “leader” for the job.

Borrego, meanwhile, is a serious candidate for the Los Angeles Lakers job and participated in a second interview with the team on Wednesday, Wojnarowski reported, citing sources.

The Lakers are also rumored to have Atkinson on their roster. Atkinson has been on Golden State’s staff for the past three seasons and was a key figure during the Warriors’ 2022 NBA Finals run. The 56-year-old was head coach of the Brooklyn Nets from 2016 to 2020 and led a strong turnaround during his time with the team.

But Atkinson also has ties to the Cavaliers thanks to those years in Brooklyn, where he coached Cleveland players Jarrett Allen and Caris LeVert.

However, the fact that Atkinson is a top prospect and will reportedly be interviewed doesn’t necessarily mean he’s leaving Golden State. While the Warriors were battling the Boston Celtics in the 2022 Finals, Atkinson agreed to become the head coach of the Charlotte Hornets before ultimately deciding it was best to stay with the Warriors.

Atkinson was also reportedly a candidate for head coach of the Milwaukee Bucks after the team fired Adrian Griffin early in the 2023-24 NBA season, before ultimately hiring Doc Rivers as his replacement.

As Warriors coach Steve Kerr’s right-hand man and NBA champion, it’s no wonder there is so much interest in Atkinson.

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