The Golden State Warriors have one of the best coaching staff in the NBA despite their horrid start to the season. The latest rumors suggest that some Warriors assistant coaches could leave for greener pastures next season.
According to an anonymous Western Conference executive, two assistant coaches from the defending champions could be in demand in the summer. The executive told Sean Deveney of Heavy Sports that the first one is Jama Mahlalela, who would be perfect for a rebuilding team.
“If you get a team that is going into a rebuild and is looking for that developmental guy, I would expect Mahlalela to get a good look,” the exec said. “He is on top of all the advanced stats. He is a very sharp guy, but he also is a very good communicator. Good at knowing how to bring guys along at their own pace.”
“If Detroit or Indiana were to make a change, he would probably be a good candidate. If Charlotte does a tear-down, Mahlalela would at least get an interview, you’d think.”
The executive added that Kenny Atkinson is the other Golden State Warriors assistant who might have suitors in the offseason. However, the exec believes that Atkinson could have a tough time convincing teams due to what he did with the Charlotte Hornets last summer.
Atkinson had an agreement to become the Hornets’ next head coach after James Borrego was fired. However, he changed his mind at the last minute and decided to stay in Golden State.
“Kenny has shown he has coaching chops,” the executive said. “He can certainly do a rebuild, he has done it before. But he might be looked at for a team like Atlanta, a place he coached at before. A team that is underachieving and needs a change of attitude. Kenny brings a lot of positivity.”
The executive continued:
“The stuff with Charlotte last year might hurt him a bit. Mo one likes to see a team get strung along like that, then turned down very publicly. But you know, Billy Donovan did that with Orlando and he has had no problem getting and keeping jobs in the NBA.”
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Who was the last Golden State Warriors assistant to get a head coaching job?
The last Golden State Warriors assistant to land a head coaching job in the NBA was Mike Brown. He was hired by the Sacramento Kings in the offseason following Brown’s impressive stint in Golden State. He spent six years with the Warriors, winning three championships.
With the Kings this season, Brown has done an excellent job. Sacramento has a record of 17-13 and are sixth in the Western Conference. If they can continue winning, the Kings will end the longest playoff drought in NBA history.
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