East Notes: Hawks, Coaching Staff, Raptors, Cavs


Coach Quin Snyder has added two new assistants to his bench in Steven Klei and Jeff Watkinson, per Lauren Williams of the Atlanta Journal-Constitution.

The assistants from the Nate McMillian era remain, including Joe Prunty, who served as interim coach after McMillan was dismissed.

Both both Klei and Watkinson worked were assistants under Snyder with the Jazz. Watkinson will focus on what has been called integrative basketball development.

“He’s working right now with the front office in a player-development role,” Snyder said. “It’s kind of (the) line is blurred as far as him being able to do some stuff on the floor. That’s kind of something we’ve talked about, (Hawks general manager Landry Fields) and I, you want that type of intersection in different things, and some of it’s organic.”

What will become of McMillan’s former assistants remain to be seen, with more changes potentially taking place over the summer.

  • Snyder told David Aldridge of The Athletic he wasn’t planning to coach again this season. “I didn’t anticipate this happening now, but it was intriguing enough,” Snyder said, via Aldridge. “And then the more I learned about it, it just made sense to me, even though the timing wasn’t what you thought it would be, that it made sense to do.”
  • In case you missed it, the Hawks signed shooting guard Bogdan Bogdanovic to a four-year contract extension, as we relayed here. The deal includes a team option in the fourth year, per Bobby Marks of ESPN.


Coach Nick Nurse suggested the February trade for center Jakob Poeltl has proven to give the Raptors the man in the middle they had desperately lacked.

“(Poeltl has) given us a little bit better screening game, a roll threat,” Nurse said, via Eric Koreen of The Athletic. “When you got the roll threat going, it usually gives you a little bit of a weakside catch-and-shoot opportunity.”

  • Nurse has been making a pitch for forward OG Anunoby as Defensive Player of the Year. “I’m not sure who’s as versatile, period, and who’s as effective, even on the winning teams,” Nurse said, via Aaron Rose of SI.com. “He’s certainly an all-defensive team player in my mind, for sure, if not the winner of the award.”


  • Center Jarrett Allen (eye) will miss his third straight game when the Cavs host the Wizards on Friday. Allen is still considered day-to-day. Sources told Hoops Wire the Cavs are hoping his eye will have healed enough so that he can return early next week.
  • The backup big positions are a problem that could haunt the Cavs during the playoffs, wrote Jason Lloyd of The Athletic. Centers Mamadi Diakite and Robin Lopez and forward Isaiah Mobley are not viable options, Lloyd added.

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