The Brooklyn Nets surprisingly fired coach Kenny Atkinson on Saturday. Now it’s becoming clearer why, with reports indicating that All-Star point guard Kyrie Irving already having an eye on who he’d like to become the Nets next coach.
According to Yahoo Sports’ Vincent Goodwill, Irving prefers that the Nets hire Los Angeles Clippers assistant Tyronn Lue to become the head coach next season.
Irving, whose relationship with Atkinson reportedly deteriorated early on, has a positive relationship with Lue from their time together with the Cleveland Cavaliers. The Cavaliers hired Lue midway through the 2015-’16 season, when the team went on to win the NBA Finals thanks to Irving’s game-winning shot.
Brooklyn came into the season with high expectations, even while understanding that Kevin Durant would miss the entire season. However, Irving played in just 20 games this season before undergoing season-ending shoulder surgery.
While there could certainly be plenty of drama for a coach with Durant and Irving, the opportunity to coach two of the NBA’s best players will attract plenty of interest. Lue nearly became the Los Angeles Lakers coach this offseason before the deal fell apart. If the Nets give him a call, it could be just the move the Nets need to keep their stars happy.