After being widely expected to become the next coach of the Charlotte Hornets, Golden State Warriors assistant coach Kenny Atkinson will be returning to the defending champs. The decision came after the Warriors secured another NBA Championship, and Golden State's head coach Steve Kerr revealed why he believes Atkinson decided to stay.
"We're in a great place, we got great players, we live in a beautiful part of the country, Kenny's got two kids, you know teenagers who really wanted to stay, and I think it's a really difficult thing to try to take a job in the middle of the Finals without really getting a chance to unwind," Kerr said. "I think over the course of the Finals, he just felt it, he felt like you know what this is not the best time for my family and me to leave. So I'm glad that Kenny trusted his gut, and hopefully Charlotte ends up with a great coach and everybody moves forward. We're lucky to have him back, especially losing Mike Brown, I need Kenny, and I'm thrilled he's back."
Atkinson has head coaching experience, last serving as a head coach for the Brooklyn Nets in 2020. Following his departure from Brooklyn, Atkinson was on the LA Clippers staff for the 2020-21 season, before winning a championship with the Golden State Warriors as an assistant this past season. For Steve Kerr and the Warriors, they are happy to have Atkinson back.