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Atlanta Hawks announce Lloyd Pierce as new head coach

From Staff

Coming off their worst season in 13 years, the Hawks hired someone with recent experience in the process of rebuilding a franchise.

Atlanta reached an agreement Lloyd Pierce to become the franchise’s new head coach, the team announced on Friday. Pierce arrives fresh off a second-round run with Philadelphia as an assistant coach. His five-year run with the 76ers came after assistant coaching stints with Memphis, Golden State and Cleveland.

Pierce’s most recent experience plays into the Hawks’ plans to rebuild from the ground up, a project that begins with the three first-round draft picks the team owns this summer. Pierce witnessed and played a role in Philadelphia’s draft-driven turnaround that saw the 76ers go from bottom-feeder to conference up-and-comer.

The hiring of Pierce comes weeks after Atlanta and former head coach Mike Budenholzer parted ways. Budenholzer led the Hawks to one of the most successful eras in franchise history, including the team’s only trip to the conference finals since its move to Atlanta in 1968. The core of that Hawks team, however, was slowly dismantled by trades and free agency.

Now, Atlanta is hopeful the combination of Pierce and an injection of drafted talent can jumpstart a new era.