Derek Fisher was let go as the Knicks head coach in part because of his communication skills — players felt left in the dark at times, and Phil Jackson and Fisher were not communicating in the way you would hope a coach and GM would.
So they may ultimately replace him with… David Blatt?
Kurt Rambis is still the front-runner to keep the job he currently has on an interim basis. Much to the chagrin of Knicks fans (and with good reason). They are hoping for someone else, but that someone else was probably not Blatt. That said, he’s on the Knicks radar, reports Ian Begley of ESPN.
One name that the Knicks are considering, according to league sources, is former Cleveland Cavaliers head coach David Blatt.
Jackson views Blatt favorably, according to sources. It’s also worth noting that Blatt played basketball with Knicks GM Steve Mills at Princeton… It wouldn’t be a surprise if Jackson considered other candidates outside of Blatt as well, though Rambis is still believed to be one of the top candidates.
Blatt knows the game and knows how to coach it, he won 67.5 percent of his games with the loaded Cavaliers’ roster. His problem in Cleveland was a combination of his ego and communication. He expected instant respect for all his time spent in the European and International game, and if he felt he wasn’t getting that he talked down to people — players, media, everyone. He didn’t earn that trust and respect, and when he didn’t seem to get it from LeBron James things got uncomfortable. The Cavaliers felt they needed to make a mid-season change despite a top-of-the-East record because of all of it.
Did Blatt learn his lessons from the Cavaliers experience? Would Carmelo Anthony be accepting (assuming he is still a Knick next fall)? The biggest knock against Blatt may be that he is not a triangle offense guy — his stuff is much more Princeton/motion, when he can get guys to buy in (which goes back to the ego/communication issues mentioned before). If Phil Jackson is committed to the triangle, Blatt is not his guy.
If Jackson is willing to let the triangle go, that would open up the door to a lot of good coaches currently looking for jobs. Although I find it hard to believe Jackson and Tom Thibodeau could work smoothly together.