Brooklyn Nets and Kenny Atkinson part ways, in shocking move

Kenny Atkinson, Brooklyn Nets. (Photo by Elsa/Getty Images)
Kenny Atkinson, Brooklyn Nets. (Photo by Elsa/Getty Images) /
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New York Knicks
Kenny Atkinson and Kyrie Irving, Brooklyn Nets. (Photo by Steven Ryan/Getty Images) /

After an up and down season, the Brooklyn Nets and Kenny Atkinson have mutually decided to part ways, which comes as a shock throughout the NBA.

This morning, the Brooklyn Nets released a statement informing everyone that they and Kenny Atkinson have parted ways, making Jacque Vaughn the interim head coach.

This news comes as a shock the NBA world because Atkinson was a reason the Nets became a relevant team these past few years. He was one of the reasons for the team’s turnaround after former Nets General Manager, Billy King, made possibly one of the worst trades in NBA history.

For those who do not remember the Boston Celtics fleecing of the Nets, Billy King was responsible for trading Kris Humphries, MarShon Brooks, Gerald Wallace, Keith Bogans, Kris Joseph, and most importantly, three unprotected first-round draft picks to the Celtics. And in return, the Nets received Kevin Garnett, Paul Pierce, and Jason Terry. This trade was cringe-worthy because the Nets received three aging superstars and mortgaged their future.

However, thanks to current Nets General Manager, Sean Marks, who hired Atkinson and made some stellar acquisitions, including players like D’Angelo Russell, Spencer Dinwiddie, Jarrett Allen, and Carris LeVert, the Nets were able to become a relevant team again.

While Atkinson was the head coach of the Brooklyn Nets (2016- 2020), the team was starting to come together. They became an underdog story (and quite frankly, NBA darlings) during the 2018-19 season. The same season when the Nets made the playoffs as a sixth seed after finishing with a 42-40 record. It was one of their finishes since the 2013-14 season (44-38) and their first playoff appearance since the 2015-16 season.