Discontent within the Atlanta Hawks' locker room appears to have played a role in the organization's decision to fire head coach Lloyd Pierce on Monday.
Several players were in favor of having a new voice on the sideline, including franchise star Trae Young, big man John Collins, and second-year wing Cam Reddish, sources told The Athletic's Chris Kirschner, Sam Amick, and David Aldridge.
Some players reportedly perceived Pierce as unapproachable and unwilling to be accountable for his own mistakes, resulting in assistant coach Chris Jent serving as an intermediary between the players and their head coach.
Friction between Pierce and key players was reportedly evident during 2018-19, his first season as head coach. Sources with knowledge of the team's plans believe Pierce may have been fired following the 2019-20 campaign if not for the pandemic and his leadership on social justice issues last year, according to The Athletic.
Ultimately, the 44-year-old's tenure ended with a 63-120 record over two-plus seasons. Former Portland Trail Blazers and Indiana Pacers head coach Nate McMillan will coach the Hawks on an interim basis.