According to ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski, the Charlotte Hornets have an early list of candidates for their head coaching opening. Including previous coaches Mike D’Antoni and Kenny Atkinson.
Sean Sweeney of the Dallas Mavericks and Darvin Ham of the Milwaukee Bucks expect to interview for the available position.
After four seasons with the Hornets, former head coach James Borrego sacks in April.
This season, Charlotte’s 43-39 record was the franchise’s first winning record since 2015-16. Although the Hornets fell short of the playoffs in the play-in round, losing by 29 points to the Atlanta Hawks. Happens after the team’s aspirations for 2020-21 dashes following a 27-point setback in the play-in round.
According to Marc Stein, the team’s decision to terminate Borrego of his “repeated no-shows in play-in games.”
Even though the team has not made the playoffs in the past six seasons, an intriguing squad led by LaMelo Ball, Miles Bridges, and Terry Rozier. They could make this a sought-after position this summer.
Hornets D’Antoni has led five different organizations in 16 seasons, making him the most experienced coach on the preliminary list. He has a regular-season record of 672-527 and has been an NBA Coach twice.
The 70-year-old took the Houston Rockets to the playoffs for the fourth consecutive season, winning 65 games in 2017-18, but he couldn’t lead the team Hornets to the NBA Finals.
D’Antoni worked with Hornets general manager Mitch Kupchak when both were with the Los Angeles Lakers, according to Wojnarowski, and the two have an “excellent working relationship.”
Hornets: Atkinson, 54, coached the Brooklyn Nets for four seasons, bringing them to the playoffs in 2018-19, before sacks the following season. He worked as an assistant with the Golden State Warriors throughout their rebirth. And as a Western Conference contender this past season.
Atkinson, 54, led the Brooklyn Nets to the playoffs in 2018-19 before being fired. During the Golden State Warriors’ revival as a Western Conference contender this past season, he served as an assistant coach.
Sweeney is in his debut season with Mavericks after serving as an assistant with Hornets, Bucks, and Detroit Pistons in the past.