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Kenny Atkinson knows a lot about Spencer Dinwiddie. Gregg Popovich? Not so much

Pre-game Notes from Kenny Atkinson and Pop

Brooklyn Nets v Washington Wizards Photo by Scott Taetsch/Getty Images

What more can be said about Spencer Dinwiddie?

Challenge accepted, says Kenny Atkinson.

Okay, not really, but the second-year head coach did distribute some praise in the direction of Dinwiddie, who is enjoying a breakout season.

“I think he’s in a good place. I think he’s getting better,” said Atkinson ahead of the Nets’ contest against the San Antonio Spurs on Wednesday. “This is a tough league. We’ve been leaning on him a lot. I think sometimes what we do have to realize is that (for) Spencer, this is the first time he’s been in this position.

“This isn’t John Wall in his fifth year in the league playing 30 minutes a game,” Atkinson continued. “This is his first go at playing these kind of minutes. We’ve got guys that are in new roles and it’s a challenge. The biggest challenge for young players in this league is consistency. That’s why the great players in this league, that’s what they do, they do it night in and night out. Spencer is doing it on a majority of nights, there’s been a couple of down games but we still think he’s playing great and has had a really good season so far.”

Gregg Popovich, Atkinson’s opponent Wednesday, asked about Dinwiddie’s emergence, didn’t offer much, on the flip side. Quite frankly, he doesn’t know much of what’s going on in Brooklyn.

“It’s great that he’s capitalized on it but I can’t tell you that I’m aware of his situation. As far as everything he’s gone through and how far he’s improved from here to there … I don’t watch Dinwiddie tape all day,” he said humorously. “I’m not being a wise ass, I’m just saying. We turn it over and sometimes we don’t get back in transition d(efense), and sometimes we lost and sometimes we don’t rebound well and I watch those films. If I get that stuff right I don’t have to worry about Dinwiddie. So I can’t answer.

“But, I’m happy for the kid. We’ve had guys that have gone on, Jon Simmons and Cory Joseph, Bryn Forbes has been on our D League team the last couple of years and now he’s getting a chance to play, to fill those minutes.”

Now, of course, this ends with Dinwiddie having (another) career-night in victory, against Pop, right?