#1) The stars like him
Ultimately, what will either make or break Kenny as the coach of the Nets is if he has the approval of their superstars. That’s just how the NBA works in 2020.
If Durant and Irving deem him the right man for the job, he’ll stick around. If they view him as a detriment in achieving their ultimate goal, he’ll likely be shown the door.
Per Danny Abriano and Ian Begley of SNY, Kevin Durant had the following to say about Kenny Atkinson and how his approach to coaching allured him to Brooklyn.
"“I was doing a lot of YouTube research on Kenny Atkinson and watching interviews seeing how he talked after the game. I really liked his approach to his craft as a coach. That drew me in pretty quickly. I didn’t really do too much research on other coaches,”"
Watching the job he’s done without the luxury of roster stability has likely heightened their regard for Atkinson.
However, this is all just speculation at this point. Kenny has made his bones in the NBA as a coach that can get more with less. But next season he’ll step into unchartered territory with the expectation of seriously looking to contend for a title.
He’s more than proven through his body of work that any executive should feel confident in his abilities to general such a squad, but if they don’t meet expectations, it’s a ruthless game. Until then, Kenny Atkinson deserves to be the coach now and moving forward.