The New York Knicks cannot be happy about losing their No. 1 coaching candidate Steve Kerr to the Golden State Warriors, especially since Phil Jackson felt so confident he could close the deal. Regardless, the Knicks must move on, which means Jackson must put together a list of new top-priority candidates. Apparently, at the top of that list is none other than NBA veteran Derek Fisher.
Fisher, who is in his 18th year in the league, won five NBA championships with the Los Angeles Lakers under Jackson. He has always shown the necessary leadership qualities on the court that made it seem like he would do a phenomenal job as a coach one day. Considering Jackson has made it clear he would like the next head coach of the Knicks to be someone he has worked with before, it makes sense why he would be eager to line up an official discussion with Fisher in the very near future.
However, the 39-year-old is currently trying to help the Oklahoma City Thunder defeat the San Antonio Spurs in the Western Conference Finals. For that reason, he consistently redirects all questions about his coaching candidacy to the current state of the Thunder. As much as Fisher is flattered to be considered for a higher position once his playing days are over, the reality is he is still very involved with helping Oklahoma City win their second NBA championship in franchise history.
With that being said, I have to imagine Fisher will be eager to have a sit-down with Jackson once the Thunder’s season comes to an end. He would be foolish not to at least hear what Jackson has to offer, especially if the Knicks are believed to want Fisher badly.
Putting a rookie head coach with zero coaching experience at the helm of a team that is in the largest sports market in the world is certainly a big gamble. Not to mention, the Knicks have too many issues, which will only add to the pressure of whoever the new coach will be. However, Jackson knows that Fisher has an intelligent basketball mind. He also knows that Fisher can command the respect of the people around him, which is something New York desperately needs.