Coach Steve Nash

Nets disclosed Head Coach Steve Nash has agreed to Part Ways

November 2, 2022

After a poor start and additional controversy surrounding Kyrie Irving, Steve Nash has quit as the Brooklyn Nets’ coach.

A day after defeating Indiana to move up to 2-5, the Nets revealed on Tuesday that they had parted ways with the Hall of Fame point guard.

Nash made it to this season despite Kevin Durant saying he should leave this summer. With a poor play on the court and negative headlines off it, the Nets have been yet another mess.

The biggest was produced by Irving, who drew ire from Nets owner Joe Tsai last week when he shared a link to an antisemitic piece on his Twitter page.

General manager Sean Marks stated, “Since taking over as head coach, Steve was presented with many unusual obstacles. We appreciate his leadership, tolerance, and humility throughout his stay.”

We decided that a change is required at this time after considerable consideration and an examination of how the season has started, even though it was a callous decision for us personally to make.

The Nets might replace Nash right now. Ime Udoka, a former Brooklyn assistant coach who is not with the Celtics this season after being found to have broken team rules by having a connection with a female employee, was reportedly being courted by the Nets, according to a source with knowledge of the situation. The individual talked to The Associated Press under anonymity because the conversations were private.

A source initially revealed the conversations between Udoka and the Nets. The Nets announced that the team would choose the next coach soon.

In each of the Nets’ full seasons under Nash’s direction, they finished with a 92-62 record and made the playoffs. However, they suffered injuries during their second-round loss to Milwaukee in 2021, lost James Harden and Kyrie Irving, and after moving Harden in the middle of the previous season, finished last season with a first-round flop.

Irving’s inability to attend most of their home games during the later season mainly resulted from his refusal to receive the coronavirus vaccination, which was required at the time in New York City.

Although Nash managed everything as well as he could, it was insufficient for his finest player. If the Nets didn’t remove Marks and Nash this summer, Durant stated he would like to be traded, but Tsai remained by them, and Durant eventually withdrew his demand.

Before the start of this season, Nash downplayed that, saying he didn’t think the rumors were accurate and that they had already quickly worked through their problems.

But after their defeat to Indiana on Saturday night, Nash called the club’s defensive effort a “disaster” and said he didn’t see passion or will. Nash’s harshest critique of the team during his tenure.

Nash remarked, “We must look very, very deeply within ourselves to determine what it is that we want to do and achieve. “Do we want to quit this because it has been difficult to start, or do we want to press on and begin to create something?”

Much of that was disregarded in favor of Irving’s belligerent press conference defending his tweet, and the Nets defeated the Pacers on Monday to snap a four-game losing streak.

However, a day later, hours before Brooklyn was scheduled to host Chicago, Nash’s employment ended. When the Bulls come around, Jacque Vaughn will be the interim head coach.

Tsai’s message honoring Nash made mention of the ongoing volatility around the team.

Over time, as he consistently put in the effort and maintained a positive outlook for our business, Tsai stated, “my regard and esteem for him rose, especially in times of extreme storm surrounding the team.”

Nash called the position “a wonderful experience with many challenges that I’m grateful for,” and he praised the Tsai family and Marks for giving him a chance.

While Nash was a two-time MVP with the Phoenix Suns and finished his 18-year career third on the NBA’s list of all-time assist leaders, Marks chose his former teammate to be the coach in 2020 despite having no prior coaching experience. Marks cited Nash’s ability to connect people as a player as the reason for his selection.

Despite the unusual storms surrounding the team, Tsai remarked, “He always brought hard effort and a cheerful attitude to our organization.”

The work was “a fantastic experience with many obstacles that I’m grateful for,” Nash said in his thank-you letter to the Tsai family and Marks.

Despite having no prior coaching experience, Marks chose Nash, a two-time MVP with the Phoenix Suns, to fill the position in 2020. Nash finished his 18-year career third on the NBA’s list of all-time assist leaders with 10,335 and was cited by Marks as having the ability to connect people.

However, his tactics drew criticism because the Nets struggled defensively during his reign and frequently lacked the ball-moving offense of his Suns teams, relying instead on Durant, Irving, or Harden to isolate.

Nash had to adjust to changes on his bench and player adjustments. Ime Udoka left to take over as coach of the Boston Celtics after one season after Mike D’Antoni, the two-time NBA Coach of the Year, resigned as his assistant.

The Nets announced that a selection would be made soon regarding the team’s next coach.