Kenny Atkinson reportedly had fallout with Spencer Dinwiddie and contingent of Nets' locker room
Kenny Atkinson's abrupt departure from the Brooklyn Nets caught most people off-guard, but the ultimate decision for each party to go their separate ways was apparently brewing the last few months.
According to SNY, Atkinson's voice began to fall upon deaf ears among some of the players in the Nets' locker room. One player in particular, Spencer Dinwiddie, has looked visibly frustrated with his role on the team.
With Kyrie Irving playing in just 20 games before shutting it down due to shoulder surgery, the New Jersey native had all the fingers pointing in his direction from fans and members of the media in the aftermath of Atkinson's departure.
In reality, Dinwiddie carried the Nets for stretches in the absence of Irving and kept the Nets season afloat when it appeared to be in seriousl peril. Once Caris LeVert got back in the swing of things, Dinwiddie's minutes started to shrink and he was moved in and out of the starting lineup.
LeVert had a heroic performance on Tuesday against the Boston Celtics with 51-points to carry the Nets to a come-from-behind overtime victory. The Nets would go out the next night and lost by 39 points at home to the then-sub.500 Memphis Grizzlies.
Atkinson reportedly let his players have it following a lackluster loss and despite a dominating win over San Antonio, the coach's fate was already sealed.
During his press conference on Saturday, general manager Sean Marks indicated that the decision was made after consulting with all 17 players and getting the thoughts of owner Joseph Tsai.
Only the players in the locker room know exactly what happened behind closed doors, but if one thing is clear Atkinson's close relationship with Dinwiddie and other deteriorated significantly during a difficult year.