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Five head coaches the Thunder should pursue for the post-Billy Donovan era

SMG Logo By Logan Newman of SMG | Slide 2 of 5: The Thunder and the Brooklyn Nets may have the most different rebuild set-ups of any two teams in recent memory. When Atkinson took over in 2016, the Nets were past their Kevin Garnett and Paul Pierce playoffs days, but they weren't past the days that netted them the future Hall of Famers. Brooklyn gave up their 2014, 2016 and 2018 first round picks and gave Boston the right to swap 2017 first round picks. Despite that, Atkinson led the Nets to the playoffs in his third year. How much better off would the Nets have been if they had their own picks, and also a half-dozen from other teams like the Thunder? Putting Atkinson in an environment where he has young players like Gilgeous-Alexander, Darius Bazley and Lu Dort to work with, then making smart roster moves the way Brooklyn did, could expedite a rebuild. After serving as an assistant coach for the New York Knicks from 2009-2012 and the Atlanta Hawks from 2013-16, Atkinson might want a new challenge. Oklahoma City could provide that, and would likely benefit from his presence.

Kenny Atkinson

The Thunder and the Brooklyn Nets may have the most different rebuild set-ups of any two teams in recent memory. When Atkinson took over in 2016, the Nets were past their Kevin Garnett and Paul Pierce playoffs days, but they weren't past the days that netted them the future Hall of Famers. Brooklyn gave up their 2014, 2016 and 2018 first round picks and gave Boston the right to swap 2017 first round picks. Despite that, Atkinson led the Nets to the playoffs in his third year. How much better off would the Nets have been if they had their own picks, and also a half-dozen from other teams like the Thunder? Putting Atkinson in an environment where he has young players like Gilgeous-Alexander, Darius Bazley and Lu Dort to work with, then making smart roster moves the way Brooklyn did, could expedite a rebuild. After serving as an assistant coach for the New York Knicks from 2009-2012 and the Atlanta Hawks from 2013-16, Atkinson might want a new challenge. Oklahoma City could provide that, and would likely benefit from his presence.
© Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports

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