The Brooklyn Nets have a new head coach, and it’s a name no one could have predicted. Steve Nash has agreed to a four-year contract with the Nets and will take over as head coach for a team led by Kevin Durant and Kyrie Irving next season, according to ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski.
Nash has no previous coaching experience. Jacque Vaughan, who took over as Brooklyn’s head coach when it fired Kenny Atkinson mid-season, will stay as the lead assistant. Vaughan be the highest-paid assistant coach in the league, according to Woj.
Here’s more context from Woj:
In recent weeks, Nets owner Joe Tsai and general manager Sean Marks have been aggressive in recruiting Nash to make the leap that he had so far resisted in his retirement: head coaching.
— Adrian Wojnarowski (@wojespn) September 3, 2020
Brooklyn finished this season at 35-37 as Durant was injured for the entire year and Irving only played 20 games due to injuries. The Nets were going to be one of the most fascinating teams in the league next season even before they hired Nash as head coach.
Nash was a consultant with the Golden State Warriors in 2018 and reportedly developed a close bond with Durant. Nash spent five years as a consultant with the Warriors before making the surprising move to become Nets head coach. Durant had this to say about the hiring of Nash:
New Nets head coach Steve Nash has the “confidence” of Kevin Durant and the backing of Kyrie Irving after having a relationship with both for years. On KD, Nash told @TheUndefeated: “He’s one of the greatest players I’ve ever seen and to have his confidence is really important.”
— Marc J. Spears (@MarcJSpears) September 3, 2020
We’ll update this story as it develops.