East Notes: Hornets, Pacers, Wizards

Hornets

With new head coach Kenny Atkinson running things, the atmosphere around the Hornets could be more like that of a college team.

That’s the way things were for the Nets when Atkinson was the coach there — as Atkinson created a fun environment the Nets are clearly lacking today, a described by Alex Schiffer of The Athletic.

“He developed players by taking some tactics he learned in Atlanta, including ‘vitamins,’ a philosophy that originated in San Antonio and caters everything from custom workouts to time in the cold tub to each player’s needs,” Schiffer wrote.

Atkinson, 55, was one of two finalists for the Hornets job, winning out over Mike D’Antoni. He compiled a 118-190 record in Brooklyn from 2017-2020, guiding the Nets to the playoffs on one occasion. He currently serves as an assistant with the Warriors.

Pacers

Indiana brought in G League Ignite guard Dyson Daniels and Kentucky guard TyTy Washington for a workout on Friday, and Dyson said he envisions himself as a fit next to current Pacers guard Tyrese Haliburton.

“For me, this offseason has been a big focus on my shooting, being able to knock down the shot so I can play off the ball,” Daniels said, via James Boyd of the Indianapolis Star. “I’m confident in my shot now, so I feel like playing here with a guy like Tyrese, who’s a very good passer as well, I can play off the ball, cut to spots and knock down the shot. That’s something that’s come a long way in my game, and it’s definitely something I’ve worked on because every team usually has a primary ball-handler.”

Dyson is projected to be selected in the Nos. 6-10 range. And the Pacers just happen to have the No. 6 overall pick.

“I think with my defense, you can see that on film and things like that, but coming here you play 1-on-1, you play 3-on-3, 2-on-2, so you can show that in the drills and stuff,” Daniels said, via Boyd. “Busting through screens, using your hands, getting deflections, things like that. … Showing that’s my main strength and showing that offensive stuff that I’ve worked on as well.”

Wizards

  • The Wizards are yet another lottery team contemplating trading their lottery pick, per Marc Stein of The Stein Line. They currently own the No. 10 overall. As we relayed previously, the Kings (No. 4), Trail Blazers (No. 7) and Pelicans (No. 8) are also said to be open to trading their picks.
  • The Wizards are bringing in Daniels and Washington for a workout, as well as Fresno State’s Orlando Robinson and Kansas’ David McCormick for pre-draft workouts, per Chase Hughes of NBC Sports Washington. Each of the two latter names are considered second-round picks at best. Along with the lottery selection, the Wizards also own the No. 56 pick.
  • We’ve had plenty more out of Washington lately, and you can check it all out on our Wizards page right here.

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