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Scott fired after two trips to finals

Two trips to the finals, a first-place perch in the Atlantic Division and a recent coach of the month award weren't enough to save Byron Scott's job.

Scott was fired as Nets coach Monday by team president Rod Thorn, who was unhappy with the team's performance over the first half of the season. The two-time defending Eastern Conference champions are 22-20 after losing five of six games.

Scott, 42, was replaced by Lawrence Frank, a 33-year-old assistant whose promotion comes with an "interim" label for the rest of this season _ though Thorn made it clear that Frank will keep the job if the team performs well.

The Nets also hired Brian Hill as an assistant.

"Sometimes change or a different voice is good, and in this case with Coach Frank we all feel confident," guard Jason Kidd said.

Thorn said the team's seasonlong inconsistency and lack of focus convinced him that a new leadership voice was needed in the locker room.

He said the change was not related to the sale of the team for $300-million on Friday to developer Bruce Ratner, who plans to move the franchise to Brooklyn.

The Nets lead the weak Atlantic Division at 22-20. Scott holds the franchise record with 149 wins.

Also, the Nets signed veteran guard Hubert Davis to a 10-day contract and waived backup point guard Robert Pack.

TIMBERWOLVES: Guard Anthony Goldwire was released after two 10-day contracts. In five games he averaged 2.6 points and 2.0 assists in 13.2 minutes.

JAYSON WILLIAMS TRIAL: Six were added to the jury pool in the Jayson Williams manslaughter case, giving the judge 38 of the approximately 60 jurors needed to proceed in the selection phase. Williams, 35, a former All-Star with the Nets, is accused of killing limousine driver Costas "Gus" Christofi with a shotgun in 2002.