Sources: Atkinson spurns Hornets for Warriors

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Kenny Atkinson has decided he won’t become the Charlotte Hornets‘ head coach and instead will remain with the Golden State Warriors as the top assistant, sources told ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski.

Atkinson was offered the job during the NBA Finals, but after further conversations Atkinson was led to believe it would be best to remain with the Warriors.

The Hornets had narrowed their search to Atkinson with Mike D’Antoni and Terry Stotts the other finalists for the job, according to sources. Charlotte is looking to replace James Borrego, who was fired in April after going 138-163 in his four seasons with the team.

Atkinson was 118-190 in three-plus years with the Brooklyn Nets, inheriting a full rebuild and showing improvement each season until he resigned after an injury-plagued 2019-20 season. He spent the 2020-21 season with the LA Clippers as an assistant before joining Steve Kerr’s staff in Golden State.

Overall, he has spent nine seasons as an NBA assistant, including four with the New York Knicks, three with the Atlanta Hawks and one each with the Clippers and Warriors.

The Hornets have missed the playoffs in six consecutive seasons, the longest drought in franchise history and second-longest active streak behind the Kings (16). But Charlotte has several building blocks on a team that went 43-39 during the regular season to reach the play-in game, including All-Star LaMelo Ball and Miles Bridges, who is set to be a restricted free agent.

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