The New York Knicks fall to 10-13 after their loss to the Dallas Mavericks on Saturday. Tom Thibodeau’s career record with the Knicks is 88-89 with only one playoff appearance.
Thibodeau had a great run as the head coach of the Chicago Bulls, it just was not a great fit for the Knicks. Thibs is the type of coach that will do whatever it takes to get to the playoffs, even if it means sacrificing the future by not playing younger players on the team. The Knicks are not ready for a playoff push and are still a few players away from contention. They also have quite a few younger players on the roster who need minutes like Quentin Grimes or Miles McBride.
Who Should Have Been Hired?
Two guys that come to mind in the hiring process for the Knicks head coaching position are Kenny Atkinson and Mark Jackson. Atkinson was a crucial part in helping the Brooklyn Nets rebuild over the past three seasons and compete in the playoffs. Jackson has not coached since 2014, where he made the playoffs two out of the three seasons as the head coach of the Golden State Warriors.
Mark Jackson Reunion?
Jackson, if hired, would be a welcome reunion as a former Knicks point guard. There were many rumors of Jackson filling the head coaching vacancy after the firing of Mike Woodson. The Knicks instead have had many unsuccessful coaching stints since Woodson was shown the door, such as Derek Fisher, Kurt Rambis, Jeff Hornacek, David Fizdale, Mike Miller, and curently Thibodeau.
Defensive Collapse Against Dallas
The primary focus of Thibodeau’s coaching style is centered around defense. However, the Knicks are ranked 22nd in total defense which puts them in the bottom-eight in the league. In the loss to the Mavericks, the Knicks once again collapsed in the third quarter and allowed 41 points while only scoring 15. If the Knicks defense does not improve and they continue to throw games away, expect Thibodeau to be given his walking papers in the offseason.
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