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Kenny Atkinson Introduced as Head Coach of the Brooklyn Nets

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Noah K. Murray-USA TODAY Sports

When the Nets announced the hiring of Kenny Atkinson back on April 17, he was still on the sidelines as an assistant coach for the Atlanta Hawks, whom were still in the midst of a playoff race. Practically a month later, Sean Marks and the Nets were finally able to introduce their new head coach at the HSS Training Center.

Atkinson, an assistant coach for the Knicks for four years and most recently, an assistant with the Atlanta Hawks the past four years, will finally get his well-deserved chance to become a head coach in this league.

He and Sean Marks pointed up their close relationship,, his New York roots and the role development will play in the Nets rebuild.  But they also spoke of development and hope that they can keep the team's core of Brook Lopez, Thaddeus Young and a group of 20-something athletes together ... but there were no guarantees.

Atkinson, known as a point guard whisperer, also spoke about the significance of finding a starting point, comparing the role to that of an NFL quarterback.

Unlike press conferences past, there was little bombast.  The Nets have gone for the big splash hire rather than the logical basketball decision (i.e. Jason Kidd). Ownership didn't even meet Lionel Hollins when he was hired. Now, things appear to be much different and although it's premature to say; it looks like the Nets are making the right moves to head in a forward direction starting with Atkinson.

Starting off, Kenny thanked owner Mikhail Prokhorov for the opportunity, and even thanked his mom for raising eight boys, all whom were in attendance, along with players such as Thaddeus Young, Rondae Hollis-Jefferson, Markel Brown, Sean Kilpatrick and Chris McCullough.

Shortly after, he was choked up after thanking the Atlanta Hawks organization and coach Mike Budenholzer.

Along with Sean Marks stating how Atkinson was his "number one" guy, Atkinson reciprocated the compliment by saying how badly he wanted to work with Sean Marks.

He continued by preaching patience, but improvement over time; especially behind the lead of Brook Lopez and Thaddeus Young.

When asked if he'd like the Nets to model themselves after the Spurs, Atkinson answered by saying "definitely". However, he wants Brooklyn to differentiate themselves.

Pride. Brooklyn pride. Something we've craved, but haven't seen much of.

And what about assistants?!

... And what about a point guard?!

One of the last things Atkinson said was, "'I walked into Barclays Center and said 'wow this is something special.'" It rings true through all four years in Brooklyn. This IS something special. There's a reason why GM's wanted this job and head coaches too. Ownership has done everytihng in its power to make this a top class organization and everything has been, excluding the productivity on the court.

But with the hiring of Sean Marks and now Kenny Atkinson, the Nets are on the right track to fixing this thing. Just like Kenny said, Brooklyn is basketball and I'm sure plenty of people (hopefully free agents) are well aware of that.