Getting to Know Ex-Golden State Warriors Staff in Atlanta Hawks

Steph Curry with trainer Chelsea Lane, who gets all credit for rehabbing Curry’s recent injuries. (Getty)

It is particularly interesting to note that many new faces in the Atlanta Hawks front office recently arrived as the architects of success in Golden State Warriors. And even more interesting to explore a possibility if they were willing to trade for Jeremy Lin due to familiarity and to serve as a mentor for Trae Young, a 19-year old rookie with deep range and a Christian athlete, so he can be the next Steph Curry.

This trade would take precious salary cap with $12M salary plus $1.5 trade kicker (which is paid by Brooklyn Nets but affects the Hawks salary cap). This goes against the ‘rebuilding’ theme with young players in the Hawks so they must think highly of Jeremy Lin if they plan to keep him for the season.

Atlanta Hawks Front Office

GM Travis Schlenk, who was an assistant GM in the Warriors and spent 12 years there, is entering his second season in Atlanta Hawks and he has brought more GSW staff to Atlanta. More notably is Chelsea Lane who presided over physical performance and sports medicine; she was credited to help Steph Curry with his almost-career-ending ankle injury. She might prove to be a key staff member who can help Jeremy to bounce back strongly from the patellar tendon tear that sidelined him last season.

Chelsea Lane, who presided over physical performance and sports medicine, is leaving, poached by the Atlanta Hawks. Joining her in Georgia is Michael Irr, who served as strength and conditioning chief. That’s one-third of the training staff.

Longtime scout and consultant Larry Riley, whose influence had waned in recent years, also heads to Atlanta, reportedly as a special adviser.

It’s not a coincidence that Travis Schlenk, who spent 12 seasons in the Warriors’ front office, is entering his second season as general manager of the Hawks.

Coach Lloyd Pierce and Jeremy Lin Connection

Also, there seems to be some good news about the new Atlanta Hawks coach, Lloyd Pierce, having a connection and familiarity with Jeremy Lin. as he helped to develop Jeremy Lin in rookie year. He and Silas (GSW assistant coach) actually worked closely Jeremy Lin as a rookie in Golden State.

Since GSW, he has become assistant coach with Cleveland and 76ers before he became the Atlanta Hawks coach in May 2018

Still, Lin kept arriving early, leaving late, devouring film and working studiously with Silas and later Lloyd Pierce. But what Lin really needed was game repetition. The Warriors sent him to Reno, their D-League affiliate, on three occasions. That is where the lessons started to take hold.

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.

Hawks on the Hardwood Podcast on Staff Acquisitions and Linsanity

Jae Joc, host of the Hawks podcast, discussed at length the possibility why Atlanta Hawks decided to pursue Jeremy Lin to provide leadership and mentor the young Hawks players. Also, the incumbent PG Dennis Schroder had his criminal battery issues, did not offer leadership, and might be on his way out of Atlanta.

The podcast episode offered good background information of the new Atlanta Hawks front office and what the possible purpose to bring a recovering Jeremy Lin to serve as a key leader and mentor. It is worth listening for Jeremy Lin fans to listen to the in-depth analysis coverage.

Hawks on the Hardwood, ep.13. Staff acquisitions and Linsanity

If the Atlanta Hawks front office truly wants Jeremy Lin to serve as a leader and mentor by absorbing $13.5M salary cap space, it may offer a silver lining in the recent trade. It is true that Jeremy Lin still needs to prove he can be healthy for the season but he will be at a place where he is wanted, and receives help from Chelsea Lane who can help him to stay healthy throughout the season. Her credibility to help Steph Curry overcome the severe ankle injury is very reassuring.

18 Comments

  1. This is a very reassuring to read/hear all these. My skeptical mind esp after following JLin since 2012 that I should hold a wait and see unless the season begins–actions speak louder than words to me.

  2. Does Lin want to make the playoffs at 34?
    Is this yet another prove yourself year like Charlotte?

  3. JLin was obviously not wanted in BKN not matter what anybody said. That said, if he is wanted in ATL as indications appear, and he is healthy, then that is the bright spot in BKN where it is obvious they want to put their team in the hands of DLo. The more time goes by after this trade the more I can see the potential bright spots. I think we need to stop whining about the Asian discrimination. Yes it exists. Move on. Defeat that kind of thinking because it gets us nowhere by being the best player. Linsanity proved that winning, talent and generating excitement extinguishes the racial component. If the GM Schlenk wanted JLin and Coach Pierce wanted JLin then that coupled with good physical therapists from GSW is MUCH better than the situation developing BKN. Let’s see how JLin reacts once he is actually in ATL. I just want to see him play BB and from that the rest will follow.

  4. ok so schlenk took over as gm a year ago, then budenholzer “quits”, then pierce is hired as coach.

    the question we all have is, is this season 100% going to be a tank? i mean it’s certainly a rebuild, but what does that rebuild mean? remember san antonio tanked to get duncan, but it was a 1 year tank! right away duncan was a contributor and they never looked back… is it possible that this year can be like that? is it possible they try to win with trae, lin, collins, and prince?

    i’m starting to convince myself that they may not be tanking. that they did their tank this year and got the #3 pick, their “superstar” trae. and then from here on out they develop but not tank… let’s all hope for lin’s sake they try to win right away…

  5. I think one article mentioned that one argument to support the Hawks doesn’t want to tank is the new lottery change made it harder for team with the worst record to get Top 3 pick.

    Not quite sure which article it was

  6. In a business where millions of dollars are at stake, the acceptance that teams can “tank” as a legitimate strategy makes me wonder if it will backfire on the NBA. Customers must be pretty stupid to pay high dollar prices for teams that are intentionally trying to lose for some hoped for gain in the future. Tanking does exist because it is acknowledged. But is it good for the sport? Maybe it doesn’t matter because so many people so easily say “it is a business” that professional sports is separating itself from what it originally was, a sport and not a business. This is why I don’t enjoy ANY professional sports anymore. The only reason I follow JLin is not because of pro basketball but because of his very interesting story and that I am Asian. In years to come, if the NBA were to have a number of Asian players and the league were structured as it is now I would have no reason at all to watch or follow.

  7. This time Lin gets pay.

  8. For Jlin’s sake and the sake of his fans no tan king! I won’t watch tanking basketball. I don’t think ATL will want to instill that idea into a young team. They have draft picks, decent young talent now that can wine some games especially in the 2nd half of the season. They have big cap room. The only they do not have are trade assets should they want to execute a trade unless a trade is later in the season and one of their young talents breaks out. But if that happens why trade.

  9. Oklahoma City has agreed to trade Carmelo Anthony and a protected 2022 first-round pick to Atlanta for point guard Dennis Schroder and Mike Muscala, league sources tell ESPN. Anthony will be waived, and he will join team of his choice. Rockets are frontrunner.

  10. Did you guys know that DeWayne Dedmon, Kent Bazemore and Jeremy Lin all started their professional basketball career with GS Warriors?

    Jeremy Lin was signed by Golden State Warriors (2010)
    Kent Bazemore was signed by Golden State Warriors (2012)
    DeWayne Dedmon was signed by Golden State Warriors (2013)

    Head Coach: Lioyd Pierce worked as an Assistant Coach for Golden State Warriors 2010-2011.

    Schlenk had worked for Golden State Warriors since 2004 – 2016 first as a video scout last as the Assistant General Manager. He has a very impressive reputation for evaluating talents.

    Now in 2018, they all come together to work for Travis Schlenk and the Atlanta Hawks. Do you think it’s an accident? Behind everything it’s the master mind, Travis Schlenk, who has pulled all the strings together. The Atlanta Media knows little about what this man thinks?

    FYI, Travis Schlenk didn’t give that big contract to Bazemore, but Bazemore has had his best professional season with Atlanta so far since he arrived. This guy is unbelievable.

  11. If you want to see what do the Hawks have in the coming seasons, you need to read this.

    How Hawks spent $20 million this offseason and what it means going forward
    https://www.myajc.com/sports/basketball/how-hawks-spent-million-this-offseason-and-what-means-going-forward/pkZzdWSfMlK6RC5U45fvqI/

    A look at the Hawks’ upcoming draft picks:

    2019
    1st – Own
    1st – Cavaliers, Top 10 protection (Moves to first round of 2020 if doesn’t convey or second round picks in 2021 and 2022 if doesn’t convey as first round.)
    1st – Mavericks, Top 5 protection (Protections of 1-5 in 2020, 1-3 in 2021 and 1-3 in 2022 and unprotected in 2023)
    2nd – Hornets
    2nd – Timberwolves/Lakers, Least favorable *Hawks second-round pick is due to Washington, 31-55 protection

    2020
    1st – Own
    2nd – Own

    2021
    1st – Own
    2nd – Own

    2022
    1st – Own
    1st – Thunder, Top 14 protection. (Becomes second-round picks in 2024 and 2025 in does not convey)

    2023
    1st – Own
    2nd – Own with right to swap with Nets
    2nd – Hornets *Hawks get two most favorable second-round picks between their own, Hornets and Nets

    2024
    1st – Own
    2nd – Own

    2025
    1st – Own
    2nd – Own
    2nd – Nets

  12. Bud has to quit because the team is heading away from San Antonio Model and to the Golden State Model. He knows darn well that Travis Schlenk is going to trade away most of his favourite players and replace with players who can shoot 3s and play like the Warriors.

  13. Another article giving background on Travis Schlenk and the Warriors’ model. From 03/01/2018. Of note:

    “Over his previous 12 years with the Warriors, Schlenk had worked his way from video scout to assistant coach to, ultimately, assistant general manager. Now, as Atlanta’s head of basketball operations, he is trying to use the blueprint he learned in Golden State to make the Hawks relevant again.”

    “A native of Selden, Kan. (population 212), he had earned a reputation as a dogged worker with a keen eye for player evaluation.”

    “He saw firsthand with Golden State that the best way to rebuild is through the draft. Ten months after leaving the Warriors days before the NBA Finals, he and Atlanta have five first-round picks over the next two years. It also helps that Hawks majority owner Tony Ressler is willing to spend the money necessary to attract high-profile free agents.”

    “In December, Atlanta opened a state-of-the-art practice facility in the northeastern suburb of Brookhaven. The Hawks have purchased a G League team and broken ground on a $42million, 100,000-square-foot arena for the minor-league affiliate. Philips Arena is well into a renovation, and there are plans for major development in the area immediately surrounding it.”

    “There are a lot, a lot of positives,” Schlenk said. “One of the great things is having a good ownership group, just like we had with Golden State.”

    If we buy into what is said, this sounds good. (But then again, I thought the Nets sounded good too.)

    https://www.sfgate.com/warriors/article/GM-Travis-Schlenk-follows-Warriors-blueprint-12721184.php

  14. Speaking of ownership group, here is article from 04/23/2015, about the sale of the Hawks to Tony Ressler, who is married to actress Jamie Gertz.

    “Hawks sold to Antony Ressler-led group, which includes Grant Hill and Spanx founder Sara Blakely, for $850 million”

    See ironic note: “While the top-seeded Hawks were PLAYING BROOKLYN in an opening-round series Wednesday night, they announced a deal to sell the team for $850 million to a group led by billionaire businessman Antony Ressler.”

    http://www.nydailynews.com/sports/basketball/hawks-sold-new-owners-850-million-article-1.2195597

  15. So, the Hawks just hired Larry Riley as special advisor. On July 11, two days before the Hawks traded for Lin. Larry Riley was GM of Warriors, who gave Lin his first contract, but then also waived him. Another Lin-GSW connection. At the time, Lin thought he might have been signed for marketing purposes. Coincidence?

    Here’s Larry Riley responding to Linsanity, with the Knicks, but not with the Warriors.

    http://amicohoops.net/hawks-hire-former-warriors-gm-riley/

  16. Hawks Officially Announce Basketball Operations Additions, Promotions today, including training staff.

    Chelsea Lan’s official title: “Executive Director of Athletic Performance and Sports Medicine, where she will oversee the Hawks’ Athletic Performance Team and medical staff.” Sounds like she may not be as hands-on as she was with the Warriors. Did not know she is also from Australia.

    https://www.nba.com/hawks/news/hawks-announce-basketball-operations-additions-promotions

  17. Here’s a mic’ed video of Head Coach Lloyd Price at 2018 Summer League practice. Seems like he connects with the players. He’s a young guy, only 42. Also note that he wants to play with pace too.

    https://www.instagram.com/p/BkoPGi3HcCL/?taken-by=atlhawks

  18. Everybody know the Hawks are going nowhere

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