In 1991 and 1992, Duke Basketball had, shall we say, some healthy egos: Christian Laettner, Bobby Hurley, Brian Davis, Billy McCaffrey, and even the immensely popular Grant Hill all had very healthy egos.
Antonio Lang has never really been like that, at least not pubiicly. He’s very much a Southern guy, someone who instinctively reaches to shake someone’s hand when introduced and who won't stop until he does it. We don’t know for sure, but we’d bet you that he addresses older men and women and sir and ma’am and holds the door open for whoever is behind him too.
Well, maybe not Laettner.
Anyway, he’s confident enough in himself to let someone else be the star. In many respects, he’s an ideal teammate.
That’s probably true for his coaching career too.
Other than four years as head coach of the Mitsubishi Diamond Dolphins (2010-2014), Lang has been an assistant coach since 2006. He worked for fellow former Blue Devil Quin Snyder with the Utah Jazz for five years and until this week had been with Cleveland since 2019.
He’s set to reunite with Snyder, now coaching the Atlanta Hawks. Snyder has also hired Mike Brey, who was an assistant at Duke when Lang and Snyder were in Duke Blue.
And of course, Hill is a part owner of the team and currently, Jalen Johnson and AJ Griffin are both on the roster.
So if you’re looking for a Duke-ish team in the NBA, Atlanta is a pretty good bet.