Lionel Hollins’ name has been bouncing around for a while, but now he will officially become the head coach of the Brooklyn Nets.
Hollins had a great tenure in Memphis, but he was ousted in May 2013 when Dave Joerger replaced him. Despite Hollins success, the front office seemed to feel that it would be best to part ways. Sam Amick of USA Today Sports notes:
Hollins hasn’t been on the sidelines since late May of 2013, when his Memphis Grizzlies made franchise history by reaching the Western Conference Finals for the first time and Hollins received so much well-deserved praise for playing the biggest of parts. He is a more proven and widely-respected coach than the one who headed for the exits in the most abrupt of ways after just one season and is now the head coach of the Milwaukee Bucks.
His fourth full season as Grizzlies head coach was his best, as the stern-yet-savvy Hollins headed a group that — with Tony Allen, Zach Randolph, Marc Gasol, Mike Conley and the rest executing his system to near-perfection — had the league’s second best defense (97.4 points allowed per 100 possessions).The age-old “philosophical differences” got in the way of him returning on a contract not long after, and Hollins had lost out to a coach in Dave Joerger (his then lead assistant coach) who had a more compatible relationship with Memphis’ new management.
The Nets losing Jason Kidd might be the best thing that could happen to the franchise this off-season. They grabbed two second round picks out of the deal, and they also get an upgrade (I believe) at head coach. Brooklyn fans rest assured, you’re in good hands with coach Hollins.