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Monday, July 13, 2020

Report: Jeff Van Gundy, Tom Thibodeau on Knicks’ short list for head coach

Jeff Van Gundy

The New York Knicks fired David Fizdale last week after the coach failed to win with a roster that basically gave him no chance, and there would be a big risk involved for anyone who is brave enough to take the job next. Despite that, the Knicks seem to think they can still attract some flashy candidates.

The Knicks want interim head coach Mike Miller to finish out the season, but Shams Charania of The Athletic reports that they have compiled a list of coaches they believe could take over mid-season if necessary. Jeff Van Gundy, Tom Thibodeau and Mark Jackson are among them, as they are not currently working for other teams. If the Knicks want to hire a top assistant from another team’s staff, they will have to wait until the summer.

Of course, there are questions about whether any of the aforementioned candidates would even want the job. Both Van Gundy and Jackson were mentioned as possible replacements after Jeff Hornacek was fired last year, but things have only gotten worse for the franchise since. At that point, the Knicks still had a chance of signing Kevin Durant, Kyrie Irving and other star free agents. They then missed out on all the big names during the summer.

The Knicks could reportedly hit the reset button on their basketball operations department by firing president Steve Mills, so perhaps that will help convince a reputable coach that the job is one worth considering. We have heard of at least one other big-name candidate that they may pursue, but their search will probably be a difficult one given how poorly things have gone for the team for the past two decades.

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