Kendrick Nunn will be in OAKA for the remainder of this season, adding an extra threat. The new image of the rotation, Ergin Ataman’s madness and… the return of Panathinaikos. Alexandros Trigas writes.
Panathinaikos hastened to close the pending transfer very quickly, as Ergin Ataman had indicated. Within about a week, the 58-year-old coach got what he wanted (he had asked for), now being able to adjust the perimeter rotation.
Kendrick Nunn is a name that, in and of itself, has a lot of interest given the frequency with which he was mentioned during the offseason – mainly for Olympiakos. He has a good resume from the NBA, characteristics that are missing from the lively potential of Panathinaikos, but also the hype that accompanies any such transfer.
The question, of course, is what will happen on the floor.
The immediate threat and the personal phase
What Ergin Ataman diagnosed as a problem was the absence of a regional with a good personal phase. Kendrick Nunn is an athlete who can give a lot through such situations (especially after a pick n roll) and force the opposing defense to focus a lot on his own marking – a fact that creates more spaces and freedoms for Kostas Slukas. His size (1m91) certainly does not change the general rule of Panathinaikos short players, although this does not seem to be a problem for Ergin Ataman. At least at this stage.
The coach’s madness
From now on, the ball is in Ergin Ataman’s hands. His wish came true, so the (any) burden of responsibility/decision goes to him, for the part of exploiting the newly acquired peripheral.
Be that as it may, the 58-year-old technician has the luxury to “play” with the rotation and present different formations on the periphery. Based of course on Kendrick Nunn’s versatile offensive talent. The main thing is that Panathinaikos now has a player who can attack the basket vertically, shoot after the dribble and, in general, carry a team in the front of the floor if necessary.
Let’s not overlook, of course, that it will take a reasonable amount of time until he realizes where he is. At a competitive level, of course, since the regulations are quite different from what he is used to.
The (another) return of Panathinaikos
Of course, it is worth mentioning something else, even if it is not of a sporting nature: Panathinaikos showed excellent reflexes and great speed in processing the transfer. The timing (see dry market in the NBA) was such that it favored the completion of negotiations within a few days, once the club made it clear how much it wanted Kendrick Nunn.
After all, the fact that Panathinaikos put more money on the table than any other interested party, automatically gave him the title of “favorite” for his acquisition. And then his signature!
Above all else, it is of major importance for the Panathinaikos organization that it has regained its negotiating ability. Something that stems not only from the full wallet, but also from the wider way of operation, the organizational chart and the distinct roles, which allow the players to see that Panathinaikos is a great interlocutor in the market.
And this is a… return that (most) people may not count on, but it is already noticeable and makes a difference at the critical moment. As was the case with the acquisition of Kendrick Nunn.