Although the team is reportedly expected to hire its next head coach before the end of the month, the New York Knicks have yet to tender a contract offer to any of the candidates for the position, according to SportsNet New York‘s NBA insider Ian Begley. Furthermore, the team is not in negotiations with any of the applicants either.
Per Begley’s sources, the Knicks brain trust — which is headed up by Team President Leon Rose and General Manager Scott Perry — is committed to doing their due diligence with the hire, and there is a “strong likelihood” that they will hold further conversations with multiple candidates in the coming week.
As previously relayed by The Inquisitr, former Chicago Bulls and Minnesota Timberwolves coach Tom Thibodeau is considered to be the frontrunner for the position. Over eight seasons as a head coach, the 62-year-old has compiled a 352-246 record and led his squads to six playoff appearances. In his first year at the helm in Chicago, the Bulls won 62 games and advanced to the Eastern Conference Finals before falling to Miami Heat.
He was also Doc Rivers’ top assistant with the Boston Celtics when they won the 2008 NBA title.
In addition to his resume, insiders with knowledge of the situation have opined that Thibodeau’s relationships with Rose and Knicks executive vice president and senior advisor William Wesley could work in his favor.
However, it has also been rumored that former Brooklyn Nets headman Kenny Atkinson has significant support within the Knicks organization. Atkinson had an impressive track record of developing young players with the Nets; under his watch, D’Angelo Russell achieved All-Star status in the Eastern Conference. Meanwhile, Spencer Dinwiddie and Caris LeVert became backcourt stars in their own right and Joe Harris developed into one of the league’s deadliest marksmen.
The Knicks, who fired David Fizdale earlier this season after a 4-18 start, have fielded one of the youngest teams in the Association this season. New York’s roster — which is headlined by 2019’s No. 3 overall pick, RJ Barrett — features a litany of players aged 25 years or younger.
In addition to Thibodeau and Atkinson, the Knicks have reportedly interviewed L.A. Lakers assistant and Hall of Fame point guard Jason Kidd, former Knicks coach Mike Woodson, Golden State Warriors assistant Mike Brown, Bulls assistant Chris Fleming, Dallas Mavericks assistant Jamahl Mosley, San Antonio Spurs assistant Will Hardy, Philadelphia 76ers lead assistant Ime Udoka and Orlando Magic assistant Pat Delany.
Per Begley, Kidd and Woodson have some level of support within the organization. Moreover, Rose was reportedly impressed by interim coach Mike Miller this season.