Updated 12/27/2012 09:31 PM
Brooklyn Nets Fire Head Coach Avery Johnson
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Avery Johnson was fired as Brooklyn Nets coach Thursday, one day after a 108-93 loss to the Milwaukee Bucks.
Johnson was named Eastern Conference Coach of the Month for October and November after a strong 11-4 start.
However, Brooklyn has been struggling as of late, winning only three of their last 13 games.
The Wednesday night loss to the Bucks was their third in a row and dropped the Nets to third place in the Atlantic Division with a 14-14 record.
General Manager Billy King denied rumors that tensions between Johnson and star point guard Deron Williams led to the decision.
"At the end of the day, players don't fire or hire coaches," King said. "They may have input or may say things that would help people make decisions, but at the end of the day, this was a decision made exclusive of talking to any player."
Johnson said he was disappointed in the move but understood the decision.
He added that he wished he'd been given more time to turn the team around.
"I think, in Billy's case, I think this pretty much came from the top," he said. "I think Billy did a great job of trying to fight for me, but it's something that I guess had to happen."
Some Brooklyn residents NY1 spoke with believed Avery Johnson should've been given more time to turn the team around, while others said the Nets' struggles sealed his fate.
"In sports, you always need a scapegoat, and I guess he was the scapegoat this time," said one resident.
"If they think that's what they should do to make the team better, then that's their choice," said a second.
"They need a lot of help. You know what I mean?" said a third. "And it all revolved around the coach. They should have gave Avery Johnson a chance. I really think they should've gave that man a chance, you know what I mean. Granted, I'm a Knick fan, but my heart will always bleed Brooklyn, you understand. But my heart and my soul goes out to Avery Johnson."
Nets assistant P.J. Carlesimo will take over as interim head coach. He makes his debut as Nets interim head coach Friday against the Bobcats in Brooklyn.