HomeSportsSources: Snyder gets 5-year deal to coach Hawks

Sources: Snyder gets 5-year deal to coach Hawks

Quin Snyder has agreed to a five-year contract to become the Atlanta Hawks‘ coach and is expected to make his debut as soon Tuesday at home against the Washington Wizards, sources told ESPN on Sunday.

The Hawks announced Snyder’s hiring on Sunday but did not disclose terms of his contract.

The Hawks pursued Snyder, 56, immediately upon firing Nate McMillan five days ago and landed on a long-term deal with a coach who advanced the Utah Jazz beyond the first-round of the Western Conference playoffs three times before resigning in the spring.

The move to take over the Hawks right away is rooted both in the desire to make an Eastern Conference playoff run and give Snyder a chance to implement his program and standards and to evaluate the franchise’s players on the way into the offseason, sources said.

Snyder and All-Star guard Trae Young have both expressed enthusiasm about working together, and that partnership will go a long way to determining the success of the franchise. Snyder has a history of constructing strong relationships with his players while still coaching them hard. After a loss to the Hawks on Friday, Cleveland Cavaliers guard Donovan Mitchell profusely praised Snyder in a private conversation with Young and shared how instrumental the coach had been in his own development into an All-Star, sources said.

In recent days, Snyder has been engaged with Hawks general manager Landry Fields, assistant GM Kyle Korver and owner Tony Ressler on a number of philosophical, team-building and staff budgetary issues, and Snyder will enter the organization with a significant voice in player personnel matters, sources said. Snyder had been pursued in recent months for several jobs, including by the Los Angeles Lakers and Brooklyn Nets, and he brings with him a strong reputation as a program builder.

There are pronounced chemistry and leadership issues in the Hawks locker room, and Snyder’s arrival is considered a renewed opportunity to solve them before more dramatic trade scenarios need to be explored.

The Hawks hope the hiring of Snyder goes a long way toward stabilizing an organization that made changes with its president of basketball operations Travis Schlenk and McMillan within months in the regular season.

The Hawks promoted assistant Joe Prunty to interim coach, and he promptly won his first two games to lift the team to 31-30 and eighth in the East. Prunty and the rest of the Hawks’ coaching staff are expected to be retained with Snyder for the remainder of the season, sources said.

Snyder has history in Atlanta as a Hawks assistant coach under Mike Budenholzer for one season before becoming the Jazz’s head coach in 2014. Snyder led the Jazz to six consecutive trips to the West’s playoffs, including three berths in the conference semifinals.

The Hawks are facing significant offseason decisions on shaping the roster, and the chance to move quickly on Snyder’s hiring could give them a better prism with which they’ll evaluate the franchise’s future. Fields has wanted a coach who’ll improve the franchise’s player development and accountability as well as get the team moving toward the top 10 in both offensive and defensive rankings — all hallmarks of Snyder’s Jazz teams.

After replacing Jason Kidd in 2018, Prunty was 21-16 in the regular season for the Milwaukee Bucks as interim coach. The Bucks lost a seven-game series to the Boston Celtics in that year’s opening round of the playoffs.

McMillan replaced Lloyd Pierce as interim coach for Atlanta in 2021 and engineered a run to the East finals. McMillan was awarded a four-year contract and had a 99-80 record as head coach for the Hawks.

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