Even James Dolan chimes in on ‘creative’ David Fizdale with hiring official
It’s officially official, and even owner James Dolan has chimed in with his take on the hire of David Fizdale, calling him “creative.”
Knicks GM Scott Perry went with “dynamic’” and cited his “championship pedigree.” President Steve Mills called him “an effective communicator.’’
“I would like to congratulate and welcome David to the Knicks organization,” Dolan said in a release. “David is a bright and creative basketball mind who is highly respected throughout the NBA. I’m confident that Steve and Scott identified the right coach to lead this team to the success our loyal fans deserve.”
In making the announcement, the Knicks have hired their 11th coach since 2001’s Jeff Van Gundy resignation. Fizdale originally agreed to terms on a four-year deal Thursday, ending a three-week, 11-candidate search. Fizdale, 43, will be introduced Tuesday at a press conference at the Garden.
“After a thorough coaching search, it was clear that David would be a great fit with the Knicks and we’re thrilled that he is joining our organization,” Mills said. “He is an experienced coach, strong leader and effective communicator, who understands what it takes to build a winning culture.”
Perry invoked Fizdale’s time as an assistant coach with LeBron James’ Miami Dream Team, as opposed to the season-plus he spent as the Grizzlies coach.
“David is a dynamic coach who will thrive in New York,” Perry said in the release. “His championship pedigree, resiliency and expertise in player development make David well-suited to establish the Knicks as a consistent winning basketball team.”
Fizdale said in the statement he was “honored and humbled,” adding he “appreciates the enormous responsibility it is to coach the Knicks and am ready to give my all to build the type of winning team the passionate fans of New York will be proud of.”
The Fizdale fear is he’s all style, no substance, as he brings to the Garden the best eyewear in the NBA.
“David talks a good game,’’ one NBA source familiar with the Garden’s inner workings told The Post. “The Knicks will win another press conference. But the fans have seen a lot of masquerades before.’’
Fizdale is being hired on his potential — not necessarily his head-coaching résumé as he was fired after going on an eight-game losing streak last November. He famously feuded with Grizzlies star center Marc Gasol, which was was the impetus for his exit.
Counting his rookie season’s mark of 43-39, Fizdale finished 50-51 in his first head-coaching job after being a longtime assistant in Atlanta and Miami.
Fizdale turned down a Suns offer and was a front-runner in Atlanta, Orlando and Charlotte.
“He was just very in demand by several teams,” an NBA source close to Fizdale said.
The honeymoon is over for the managerial tandem of Mills and Perry, as they have their head coach in place. Jeff Hornacek was hired by Phil Jackson with Mills believed to be pulling for David Blatt.
Hornacek posted a 60-104 record in two seasons and was fired in a conference room at the Westchester Airport three and a half weeks ago after landing from Cleveland on the last night of the regular season.
Hornacek isn’t the first Knicks coach to bomb in recent years. Many coaches have come in with strong reputations and left battered.
Since the millennium began, the Knicks have the second-worst record in the NBA at 655-887, which is a .425 winning percentage. Only the Charlotte Hornets/Bobcats have been worse, by percentage points.
Next season is expected to feature more misery because of the uncertainty of Kristaps Porzingis’ return. James Dolan told The Post he’ll be out anywhere from December to the entire season, though the latter timetable is a long shot.
Source: Read Full Article