Nets Notes: Atkinson, Dinwiddie, Pelle, Big Three

Former Nets head coach Kenny Atkinson will hardly recognize his old team when he sees them for the first time since being fired, writes Brian Lewis of The New York Post. After reportedly being considered for several head coaching jobs, Atkinson caught on as an assistant with the Clippers, who make their only visit of the season to the Barclays Center tonight.

Atkinson led the Nets back to respectability during his nearly four years with the team. He was fired last March in a surprising move, reportedly because of an inability to relate to star players. With Kevin Durant now healthy and James Harden acquired in a trade, Brooklyn’s future is based around stars.

“He’s done a great job everywhere he’s been,” said Clippers coach Tyronn Lue. “Player development was always a strong suit in how he developed these young guys and other players; we’ve seen how good they’ve gotten.”

There’s more from Brooklyn:

  • It would be surprising if Spencer Dinwiddie ever plays for the Nets again, contends Alex Schiffer of The Athletic. In a column with Danny Leroux discussing Brooklyn’s roster options, Schiffer notes that Dinwiddie may be tempted to opt out of his $12.3MM salary for next season and test the free agent market. Dinwiddie is expected to miss the rest of the year after ACL reconstruction surgery, but some teams still may be interested in trading for him, according to Schiffer and Leroux.
  • Norvel Pelle‘s new deal is a minimum-salary contract with several guarantee dates, tweets Keith Smith of Yahoo Sports. This season will become guaranteed at the league-wide date on February 24, while next season is fully non-guaranteed. Pelle would receive $150K if he’s still on the roster 30 days after the offseason moratorium is lifted, and $250K on opening night.
  • Because of injuries, Durant, Harden and Kyrie Irving have only played together four times since Brooklyn’s Big Three was formed, but Zach Kram of The Ringer believes coach Steve Nash already has an ideal minutes distribution worked out. Charting their playing time so far, Kram finds that either Harden or Irving has been on the court for every minute of close games when they’ve both been available, and the Nets usually have at least two of their stars playing at the same time whenever all three are active.
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12 thoughts on “Nets Notes: Atkinson, Dinwiddie, Pelle, Big Three

  1. Sillivan

    Last year
    Atkinson thought he would get a better pay for any head coach position?

  2. He’ll get a gig and respectable pay. Brooklyn has been particular with their approach. Atkinson is a respected coach. I’d bet he’s being selective with next venture

    • x%sure

      I don’t think he got offers. But the better part of his reputation should still carry forward, since he is staying in the game with the Clippers.

  3. phillyballers

    Dinwiddie is a 6er killer, and if the Nets deal his contract, I’d be for trying to make sure he ends up as a 6er. Unlikely, but still. I’d try. The off chance that he opts in or to resign him, given the 6ers cap situation they wouldn’t be able to do so on the open market. I’m assuming they’d get his bird rights?

  4. I don’t see how even a team without cap space gives up much (even a 2nd round pick) in a trade for Dinwiddie, unless they know he’s going to opt in (which won’t likely be the case until close to the opt out date) or they have a prior agreement with him on a new contract (probably not going to happen any time soon either).

    • x%sure

      Nobody is talking about his trying to sell interest in that option year… I guess the plan fell through, or there would be talk about what his investors want with the option.

  5. Sensitive Fanboy

    If the season begins on time next season, Dinwiddie will be returning 1-2 months after the start. Going to be out of the Nets rotation.

    I wouldn’t be surprised if he picks up the option, and tries to play for a contract. His 3 shooting & defense aren’t elite. Not many takers for an injured guy I wouldn’t think.

    I wouldn’t say the Nets are stuck with him, but there isn’t many options other than bargain shopping him.

      • Sensitive Fanboy

        How could you not take the chance if you’re Dinwiddie? When is another opportunity like this coming along? That team is Historic. 2 MVP’s & uncle drew!

        Irving needs a backup to load manage anyway. He has had a tendency to get banged up in the past with big usage.

  6. KnickerbockerAl

    He’s not going to be offered a big contract if he opts out. By opting in he can play for contract next yr. Or be traded with his Bird rights which a team would want. Or if he can accept to opt in to a traded team. It’s worth it for a team to trade for him. His injury wasn’t the serious one. So he should be back strong next yr. He is a quality starting PG. Nets need help with depth and D. I’m sure they will be looking at who gets bought out.

  7. PutPeteRoseInTheHall

    I understand how strong the Big Three is, but where is the defense? If they had defense they would be almost impossible to beat, and might even be better than the Warriors were at the peak of the last decade.

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