Corey Vinson

Nets To Add Griffin, Dulkys As Assistants

The Nets are adding Connor Griffin and Deividas Dulkys as assistants on Jordi Fernandez’s staff, Michael Scotto of HoopsHype reports (Twitter link).

Griffin has been on the Nuggets’ staff, where he was originally hired as an assistant video coordinator in September 2021. Dulkys has served as a player development coach with the Kings since the summer of 2022.

Additionally, the Nets will retain Adam Caporn, Ryan Forehan-Kelly and Corey Vinson, but Trevor Hendry is departing, according to Scotto.

The Nets have also reportedly brought in Steve Hetzel from Portland to be one of Fernandez’s top assistants, along with hiring former Michigan coach Juwan Howard. Scotto previously reported that Jay Hernandez would remain on the staff, while Will Weaver and Ronnie Burrell were let go.

Nets Officially Announce Changes To Coaching Staff

The Nets were among the teams to make an in-season coaching change this past season, replacing Steve Nash with Jacque Vaughn in November. Even though he spent nearly the entire 2022/23 season running the Nets, Vaughn didn’t get a chance to reshape his coaching staff until this spring.

Vaughn is taking advantage of that opportunity, with the Nets issuing a press release on Tuesday to formally announce several changes to their coaching staff.

The new additions, some of which were previously reported, are as follows:

  • Kevin Ollie (assistant coach), the former head coach of UConn and Overtime Elite.
  • Will Weaver (assistant coach), who has coached the Sydney Kings and (this past season) Paris Basketball internationally. He’s also a veteran NBA assistant who had a previous stint in Brooklyn as a Nets assistant (2016-18) and coach of the Long Island Nets (2018/19).
  • Jay Hernandez (assistant coach), who was an assistant coach and the director of player development with the Hornets for the past five seasons.
  • Ronnie Burrell (assistant coach), the head coach of the Long Island Nets in 2022/23.
  • Corey Vinson (assistant coach/player development), a former player development coach with the Suns.

According to today’s announcement, the Nets will retain assistant coach and director of player development Adam Caporn, as well as assistants Trevor Hendry and Ryan Forehan-Kelly. They all worked under Nash and will be holdovers under Vaughn as he prepares for his first full season as Brooklyn’s head coach.

Nets Notes: Lillard, Bates, Vinson, Coaching Staff

The Nets have “genuine interest” in acquiring Damian Lillard if he asks the Trail Blazers for a trade, sources tell Brian Lewis of The New York Post (subscription required). During an appearance this week on Showtime’s “The Last Stand,” Lillard named Brooklyn and Miami as his preferred destinations, citing the Nets because of his friendship with Mikal Bridges.

Appearing Thursday on The Dan Patrick Show, Chris Haynes of Bleacher Report and TNT indicated that any trade speculation involving Lillard should be limited to those two teams, adding that Brooklyn may rank first on Lillard’s list. Haynes also believes the Blazers would try to honor Lillard’s wishes because of his long tenure with the franchise.

“If it gets to that point, they would consult with Dame because, you know, Dame’s been there 10 years, been a model citizen representing that city, in that organization, with class, all throughout,” Haynes said. “I think they will try to get him where he wants to go; in the East, that is, I do not see and envision a possibility that he would be traded to a Western Conference team.”

Zach Harper of The Athletic suggests that the Nets may be able to acquire Lillard without giving up Bridges or center Nic Claxton. Harper envisions a deal built around the expiring contracts of Spencer Dinwiddie and Joe Harris, along with several of the draft picks Brooklyn accumulated by trading away James Harden, Kyrie Irving and Kevin Durant.

There’s more from Brooklyn:

  • The Nets are typically secretive about their workouts, but Emoni Bates is among the potential second-rounders the team has hosted over the past few weeks, Lewis adds. Bates was once the top-ranked recruit in the nation, but he’s been disappointing through two seasons at Memphis and Eastern Michigan. Lewis notes that Bates has been working out for several teams to try to change his reputation. Brooklyn holds the 51st pick, along with a pair of first-rounders.
  • Corey Vinson, who worked with Bridges in Phoenix, has joined the Nets as an assistant coach for player development, according to a Nets Daily article. He becomes the seventh assistant on Jacque Vaughn‘s staff.
  • Brooklyn has seen a lot of coaching turnover since Vaughn replaced Steve Nash in November, Lewis writes in another New York Post story. The organization has shifted its focus from winning with a team of star players to trying to develop young talent.