Kenny Atkinson reportedly among finalists for Lakers job

75756A5E-120A-4932-810C-2FD980DB785E

Warriors assistant and former Nets head coach Kenny Atkinson is reportedly a finalist to become the next head coach of the Los Angeles Lakers.

Atkinson joins former Trailblazers head coach Terry Stotts and Milwaukee Bucks assistant Darvin Ham as the three remaining candidates at first-round interviews, according to Adrian Wojnarowski of ESPN.com.

The 54-year-old Atkinson coached the Nets for parts of four seasons, including during the start of the team's turnaround from the doldrums of the mid-teens.

Atkinson resigned in the second half of the 2019-20 season, when it appeared he was not in the team's long-term plans after the arrival of new owner Joe Tsai and superstar players Kyrie Irving and Kevin Durant via free agency. He was replaced briefly by Jacque Vaughn, then on a permanent basis by current coach Steve Nash.

Atkinson landed with the Los Angeles Clippers last season, then moved on to Golden State coach Steve Kerr's staff this year.

The Lakers are seeking a replacement for the recently dismissed Frank Vogel, who was jettisoned just two years removed from an NBA title.

Los Angeles' next coach will be taking over a decidedly older roster coming off a bitterly disappointing season that ended without reaching the playoffs. Complicating things is the uncertain long-term future of four-time MVP LeBron James, who is entering his walk year before free agency.

James has indicated he plans to play alongside his son Bronny, an incoming high school senior, once he's eligible to play in the NBA. Bronny would be draft-eligible in 2024.

Former Warriors head coach turned ESPN analyst Mark Jackson had also previously interviewed for the Lakers job.

LISTEN on the Audacy App
Sign Up and Follow Audacy Sports
Facebook | Twitter | Instagram