Atlantic Notes: Larkin, Joseph, Sixers

Shane Larkin hasn’t decided what he will do regarding his $1.5MM player option for 2016/17, but the point guard would prefer to remain with the Nets for the long term, NetsDaily relays. “I’m not a guy who wants to play a 10-year career with eight different teams; I want to find a home and really lock in with a team where I know what the coach wants, what my teammates want and we can just all grow together,” Larkin told reporters prior to Kenny Atkinson being named coach. “I just turned 23, so I’m still young. Being able to get with a team on a two-year deal or three-year deal saying, ‘This is what we want you to be. We want you to spark our offense, push the tempo, be this guy and this is what we feel you can do for the team,’ then that’s perfect. Whether I’m a starter or whatever, it’s cool either way.

Larkin added that he preferred playing for former coach Lionel Hollins over interim coach Tony Brown, the NetsDaily scribe relays. “I was really comfortable with Coach Hollins,” Larkin said. “But after 37 games, to be exact, Coach Hollins was out of here and [former GM] Billy King was released or whatever it was so it was like we didn’t really have a lot of direction. Coach Tony was kind of just handed the job like, ‘All right, here you go.’ It was kind of like, ‘Just like go play basketball.’

Here’s more from the Atlantic Division:

  • The Knicks cannot move forward as a franchise until the right head coach is hired, Tommy Beer of Basketball Insiders writes. The scribe also opines that team president Phil Jackson needs to broaden his search for a new coach beyond his comfort zone and not remain fixated on hiring someone based on the triangle offense. The organization could also benefit by hiring someone whose views don’t line up with Jackson’s 100%, since some level of conflict is healthy when making decisions, Beer adds.
  • Cory Joseph is pleased with his decision to sign with the Raptors last summer and is happy with the organization as a whole, Doug Smith of The Toronto Star relays. “I feel like I’ve got a good team controlling my situation for me,” Joseph said.
  • Much of the Sixers‘ offseason plans will rely on luck, something that hasn’t been on the franchise’s side the past few seasons, writes Keith Pompey of The Philadelphia Inquirer. Philadelphia has already had some negative luck this offseason, with the 2016 first-rounder the team is owed from the Heat slipping from a possible No. 21 overall down to No. 24 due to tiebreakers not going its way, Pompey notes.

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