Ian Begley, SNY.tv Twitter | 

David Fizdale says he has to watch the film of Wednesday's game against the Spurs before he decides who will start at point guard for the Knicks on Friday.

But it sounded like Elfrid Payton had earned the job.

"Elfrid absolutely put his foot forward, took it to heart and ramped up the competition," Fizdale said after the Knicks lost in San Antonio. "Like I said, I'm going to keep an open mind of this and whoever fights their way out of the pile, that's who's going to get the nod."

 

So much of this season will be about who Fizdale chooses to play and when.

His starting backcourt on Wednesday wasn't the answer. With RJ Barrett and Allonzo Trier on the court, New York fell behind by nine in the first six minutes.

When Payton checked in midway through the second quarter, the Knicks trailed by 13. Over the next 16 minutes, New York outscored San Antonio by 13 and carried a one-point lead into the fourth quarter.

"He stays ready. He's always ready," Marcus Morris said of Payton. "He showed us tonight, played well. Anchored the team. When he came in he changed the game for us."

Payton, who signed with the Knicks as a free agent over the summer, probably did enough to earn the starting job on Friday against Brooklyn. But he didn't seem to care about starting or coming off the bench when talking to reporters after Wednesday's game.

"That ain't really what I'm about," Payton said. "I'm just trying to win. Just trying to help the team win."

Payton finished with 11 points, five steals and eight assists, spearheading a solid defensive effort from New York.

Barrett 'ready' for bright lights

The Knicks lost a winnable game on Wednesday, but Barrett's debut was encouraging for a team that hopes to build around a solid young core.

"I told you, when the popcorn is popping that kid is ready," Fizdale said.

Barrett had 21 points, five rebounds and two steals in his NBA debut. He looked like the same calm, confident player that the Knicks saw during preseason, hitting nine of 13 shots (eight in the paint).

At 19 years and 131 days, Barrett was the second-youngest player to score more than 20 in his debut. LeBron James' 25 points at 18 years and 303 days is ahead of Barrett there, while Anthony Davis' 21 points at 19 years and 234 days comes in third. 

Barrett helped lead a defense for New York that had 16 steals and forced 21 turnovers overall. New York scored 32 points off of turnovers on Wednesday, getting the easy baskets that were hard to come by for much of last season.

"He was fantastic -- I thought he really competed," Fizdale said of Barrett's defense. "He only had really one bad breakdown where he helped off the corner and gave up the three. Overall, he was playing both ends of the floor at a high level."



Barrett, Morris and Julius Randle combined for 72 points on 57 percent shooting.

Randle (25 points) left the game for a few minutes in the fourth quarter due to a cramp as the Spurs were on a 21-2 run. He admonished himself after the game for not being available during that time.

"I can't do that to my team," said Randle, who had 11 rebounds, six assists and three steals in his Knicks debut. "I'll fix it. It was unfortunate. Crucial part of the game and I've got to stay in it."

Fizdale preaches patience with Smith Jr.

Dennis Smith Jr. was in foul trouble early on and played just 10 minutes off the bench in the Knicks' loss. He finished with two points and an assist.

"I think it's just rhythm. Just finding himself again. We'll get him there," Fizdale said. "It's tough, we've been together two and a half weeks as a team, three week, and he got knocked out for a week or so there. Just got to get him back into a rhythm, get him feeling his teammates, understanding his teammates. It's a long season."

Smith Jr. missed roughly two weeks of training camp/preseason with a back injury. When asked about Fizdale's assessment that more time with his new teammates and on the court in general would help get him untracked, Smith Jr. agreed.

"I believe so," Smith Jr. said. "I have a vision for myself that maybe no one else believes in, but I got it for myself. I can't let anyone get in the way of that."


- Fizdale felt the ball stopped moving too much during San Antonio's big fourth-quarter run.

- New York was outrebounded, 10-5, on the offensive glass and gave up 15 second-chance points.

- Fizdale has made rebounding and defense a point of emphasis in the preseason.

- Frank Ntilikina had two turnovers in three minutes in a second-half substitution for Payton, who was in foul trouble.

Tags: Allonzo Trier, Dennis Smith Jr., Kevin Knox, RJ Barrett, Ian Begley
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Miami Heat shooting guard Dwyane Wade holds the the Larry O'Brien NBA Championship Trophy and small forward LeBron James holds his most valuable player trophy after Game 5 of the NBA finals basketball series against the Oklahoma City Thunder, Friday, June 22, 2012, in Miami. The Heat won 121-106 to become the 2012 NBA Champions.(AP Photo/Lynne Sladky) 
		 (Lynne Sladky/AP)
Miami Heat shooting guard Dwyane Wade holds the the Larry O'Brien NBA Championship Trophy and small forward LeBron James holds his most valuable player trophy after Game 5 of the NBA finals basketball series against the Oklahoma City Thunder, Friday, June 22, 2012, in Miami. The Heat won 121-106 to become the 2012 NBA Champions.(AP Photo/Lynne Sladky) (Lynne Sladky/AP)

The Knicks have had trouble attracting star free agents for the last decade, and they reportedly botched their meeting with LeBron James in 2010.

James had the Knicks as his top choice before meeting with them, Bill Simmons of The Ringer recently said on The Bill Simmons Podcast.

"From everyone I've talked to in the know since then, it's clear that the Knicks were the first choice," Simmons explained. "It was basically the Knicks' to lose, and they just couldn't stay out of their own way. The stories are legendary."

Tags: Carmelo Anthony, Danny Abriano
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Madison Square Garden, home of the Knicks (Treated Image by SNY)
Madison Square Garden, home of the Knicks (Treated Image by SNY)

Ian Begley, SNY.tv Twitter | 

Here's our weekly Knicks mailbag with SNY's NBA Insider Ian Begley...


@knicksquadup9: Do you think RJ and Mitch are good pieces to build around?

At this early stage, I think you can say confidently that both players are good pieces to build with. I'm not sure anyone can say yet whether either player is good enough to build around. There are only a handful of guys in the NBA who have that distinction. And it's too early to place that label on Barrett, 20, or the 22-year-old Robinson. 

Robinson has shown plenty of potential as a rim protector/roller in the pick-and-roll/finisher around the rim. He can cover a significant amount of ground for a player his size (7-0) on the defensive end. 

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Feb 22, 2020; Charlotte, North Carolina, USA; Brooklyn Nets guard Theo Pinson (1) brings the ball up court against the Charlotte Hornets during the second half at Spectrum Center. Mandatory Credit: Jim Dedmon-USA TODAY Sports (Jim Dedmon )
Feb 22, 2020; Charlotte, North Carolina, USA; Brooklyn Nets guard Theo Pinson (1) brings the ball up court against the Charlotte Hornets during the second half at Spectrum Center. Mandatory Credit: Jim Dedmon-USA TODAY Sports (Jim Dedmon )

It didn't take Theo Pinson long to find a new team, and he won't even need to relocate to a different city.

The Knicks announced on Friday that they have claimed the 6-foot-5 swingman, releasing guard Allonzo Trier to make room on the roster.

Originally an undrafted signing out of North Carolina, Pinson appeared in 51 games over two seasons with the Nets, averaging 3.9 points, 1.8 rebounds and 1.5 assists in 11 minutes per game off the bench. The Nets waived Pinson on Wednesday to sign guard Tyler Johnson.

Tags: Allonzo Trier, Lance Thomas
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Stephon Marbury (Noah K. Murray)
Stephon Marbury (Noah K. Murray)

There's at least one person who hates the addition of William "World Wide Wes" Wesley to the Knicks' front office. 

Former Knick Stephon Marbury slammed Wesley on Twitter on Thursday afternoon.

"Did you really just now bring world wide sucka to the New York Knicks? And I ain't talking about a sucka like the sucka we call a sucka," Marbury said in a video posted to his Twitter account. "Really? You brought this dude here? Why? I'm a real New York Knicks fan. I've been a New York Knicks fan since I was a spit. Come on Dolan, man. You gotta be kidding me, man. You brought this dude here? Really? What's going on, man? There's gotta be an explanation. Not him! Of all people, you bring this dude here? You bring him to NYC? To New York? He don't got no credibility here! Nah."

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Madison Square Garden, home of the Knicks (Treated Image by SNY)
Madison Square Garden, home of the Knicks (Treated Image by SNY)

Ian Begley, SNY.tv Twitter | 

As a top player agent at CAA, Leon Rose had several clients on the Knicks over the years. Carmelo Anthony, J.R. Smith, Andrea Bargnani, Eddy Curry, Rick Brunson, etc. 

So he knows recent Knicks history as well as anyone. 

Tags: Carmelo Anthony, Dennis Smith Jr., Ian Begley
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Knicks president Leon Rose (Treated Image by SNY)
Knicks president Leon Rose (Treated Image by SNY)

During his first sit-down interview since being named Knicks president, Leon Rose discussed a wide variety of topics, including the team's head coaching search.

Rose, speaking with MSG's Mike Breen, discussed the format of the coaching interviews, what he's looking for in a head coach, and how long he thinks the hiring process will take.

Miller didn't name any outside candidates, but he did confirm that interim head coach Mike Miller is on the list.

Tags: Frank Ntilikina, Kevin Knox, Mitchell Robinson, RJ Barrett
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SNY's NBA Insider Ian Begley explains that some candidates the Knicks are interviewing for head coach could be potential assistants as well, while responding to an extra Knicks Mailbag question.

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Knicks president Leon Rose (Treated Image by SNY)
Knicks president Leon Rose (Treated Image by SNY)

Knicks president Leon Rose will speak in an interview airing Wednesday night -- his first public comments since being hired in March.

Rose has only released statements between his hire and now, while reshaping the front office under him and launching the search for the Knicks' next head coach.

Here are five questions Rose should answer...

Tags: Frank Ntilikina, Kevin Knox, Kristaps Porzingis, Mitchell Robinson, RJ Barrett, Danny Abriano
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 (Joe Camporeale)
(Joe Camporeale)

Ian Begley, SNY.tv Twitter | 

The Knicks have hired CAA's William 'World Wide Wes' Wesley as an executive vice president and senior advisor to team president Leon Rose.

The organization formally announced the move on Wednesday morning. 

"We are very excited to announce the hiring of William Wesley, someone that I have known for over 40 years and consider to be family," Rose said in a statement. "He is one of the most well-connected and respected people in the basketball community and he will be a tremendous asset and resource to both myself and the New York Knicks." 

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Mike Woodson
Mike Woodson

Ian Begley, SNY.tv Twitter | 

Mike Woodson is one of nearly a dozen coaches expected to interview for the Knicks' head-coaching vacancy. There are head coaches with playoff experience (Tom Thibodeau), experience in the market (Kenny Atkinson) and a long list of up-and-coming assistants (Jamahl Mosely, Will Hardy,and Ime Udoka among them). 

But Woodson brings something unique to the table: He's the only candidate who has won as a head coach in New York.

Tags: Carmelo Anthony, Mitchell Robinson, RJ Barrett, Ian Begley
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Ian Begley, SNY.tv Twitter | 

Here's our weekly Knicks mailbag with SNY's NBA Insider Ian Begley, this time all about New York's search for a new head coach...


@Tcsmelo2: Pros and Cons of having Thibs as head coach

I could probably fill the whole mailbag with an answer to this question, but for the sake of brevity, I'll go with one in each category: 

Tags: Mitchell Robinson, RJ Barrett, Ian Begley
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Nov 13, 2017; Milwaukee, WI, USA; Milwaukee Bucks head coach Jason Kidd talks with forward Giannis Antetokounmpo (34) during the second quarter against the Memphis Grizzlies at BMO Harris Bradley Center. Mandatory Credit: Jeff Hanisch-USA TODAY Sports (Jeff Hanisch)
Nov 13, 2017; Milwaukee, WI, USA; Milwaukee Bucks head coach Jason Kidd talks with forward Giannis Antetokounmpo (34) during the second quarter against the Memphis Grizzlies at BMO Harris Bradley Center. Mandatory Credit: Jeff Hanisch-USA TODAY Sports (Jeff Hanisch)

As SNY's Ian Begley confirmed on Monday, Lakers assistant coach Jason Kidd will be getting an interview for the Knicks' head coach position. He had reported that there was "strong internal consideration" to interview Kidd for the job. 

Not only does Kidd have the head coaching experience, but there might be one specific reason -- a player to be exact -- the Knicks might be considering his employment.

Giannis Antetokounmpo will be playing in the final year of his four-year, $100 million pact with the Bucks next season, making him the most intriguing free agent to hit the market in 2021. He has expressed his desire to stay in Milwaukee, but only if they prove to remain one of the top teams in the East, so he can compete for the Larry O'Brien Trophy every year. 

Tags: Mitchell Robinson, RJ Barrett, Scott Thompson
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Jason Kidd
Jason Kidd

Ian Begley, SNY.tv Twitter | 

Lakers assistant coach Jason Kidd has significant interest in becoming a head coach again -- and he may have the chance to do so in New York. 

The Knicks plan to interview the future Hall of Famer in Kidd during their head-coaching search, league sources confirm. SNY first reported last week that Kidd was receiving strong internal consideration to be interviewed by New York.  

Kidd played one season for the Knicks, filling a pivotal role on a team that won 54 games in 2012-13. The 47-year-old thoroughly enjoyed his time as a Knick, and one source familiar with Kidd's tenure says he'd welcome the opportunity to return to the Big Apple. 

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Frank Vogel and Jason Kidd
Frank Vogel and Jason Kidd

With the NBA set to resume play in Orlando at the end of July, the Knicks' 2019-20 season is officially over. Next up on the list is finding team president Leon Rose's first head coach, undoubtedly the biggest decision of his young Knicks tenure.

Here's the latest...

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RJ Barrett
RJ Barrett

RJ Barrett's rookie season with the Knicks came to an end sooner than anyone could have anticipated, but the former third-overall pick still took time on Saturday to celebrate one year since being drafted.

"Wow I got drafted a year ago!! This year has been the most interesting year of my life by far and I've really grown on and off the court," Barrett said in an Instagram post. "New York I wanna thank y'all for embracing the young rook coming in, supporting me and making me feel at home!! I'm just really excited to see what the future holds"

The 2019-20 season was another disappointing campaign overall for the Knicks, who went 21-45 in their shortened season due to the coronavirus pandemic, finishing 12th in the Eastern Conference.

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In a surprising move, the Nets parted ways with head coach Kenny Atkinson earlier this season, despite the fact that the team holds the seventh seed in the Eastern Conference.

Atkinson is a former Knicks assistant has been praised for his ability to develop young players, such as Caris LeVert and Jarrett Allen in Brooklyn.

So could he be the right fit for the Knicks?

Tags: Caris LeVert, Jarrett Allen
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Feb 10, 2020; Indianapolis, Indiana, USA; A NBA basketball rests on the floor during a game between the Brooklyn Nets and the Indiana Pacers during the fourth quarter at Bankers Life Fieldhouse. Mandatory Credit: Brian Spurlock-USA TODAY Sports
Feb 10, 2020; Indianapolis, Indiana, USA; A NBA basketball rests on the floor during a game between the Brooklyn Nets and the Indiana Pacers during the fourth quarter at Bankers Life Fieldhouse. Mandatory Credit: Brian Spurlock-USA TODAY Sports

The NBA has reportedly decided on dates for the playoffs, NBA Draft, free agency and more.

The league currently plans to restart its paused season on July 30 in Orlando, Fla.. Here are a few key dates to know, via ESPN's Adrian Wojnarowski and Yahoo! Sports' Keith Smith:

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Knicks president Leon Rose (Treated Image by SNY)
Knicks president Leon Rose (Treated Image by SNY)

Ian Begley, SNY.tv Twitter | 

Mavericks assistant Jamahl Mosely will get an interview during the Knicks head-coaching search, SNY sources confirmed. 

Mosely joins a group of nine known candidates who will interview for the opening. 

The Knicks are expected to have brief introductory interviews with some candidates next week, per SNY sources. Those introductory interviews, which will be conducted via video conference, will be followed by longer, more formal interviews, sources say. 

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February 15, 2020; Chicago, Illinois, USA; NBA former player Isiah Thomas during NBA All Star Saturday Night at United Center. Mandatory Credit: Kyle Terada-USA TODAY Sports (Kyle Terada)
February 15, 2020; Chicago, Illinois, USA; NBA former player Isiah Thomas during NBA All Star Saturday Night at United Center. Mandatory Credit: Kyle Terada-USA TODAY Sports (Kyle Terada)

Ian Begley, SNY.tv Twitter | 

Some of Isiah Thomas' earliest memories are of he and his family protesting systemic racism. Thomas' mother, Mary Thomas, was an activist on Chicago's West Side, working with Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., Rev. Jesse Jackson and Black Panther chairman Fred Hampton. So the entire Thomas family was active in protests and demonstrations against inequality in Chicago.

"Activism was the family business. We did not have babysitters. So every protest, march, rally, riot, mom was like, 'Alright ya'll, let's go,'" Thomas says. "So we went everywhere (to join protests) together as a family."

Thomas experienced three major riots during his childhood on the West Side between 1966 and 1969.

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Madison Square Garden, home of the Knicks (Treated Image by SNY)
Madison Square Garden, home of the Knicks (Treated Image by SNY)

Ian Begley, SNY.tv Twitter | 

The Knicks, Rangers and Madison Square Garden are hosting a youth symposium on Thursday to celebrate Juneteenth, the holiday that commemorates the ending of slavery in the United States. 

On June 19, 1865, Union soldiers arrived in Texas to deliver news that the Civil War had ended and the enslaved people were free. 

In the wake of protests following the killing of George Floyd by a Minneapolis police officer, several companies -- including several pro sports teams -- have recognized Juneteenth by naming it a permanent company holiday. 

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Oct 26, 2019; San Antonio, TX, USA; San Antonio Spurs (from left to right) guard Patty Mills (14), assistant coaches Tim Duncan and Will Hardy, head coach Gregg Popovich and assistant coach Becky Hammon during the third quarter against the Washington Wizards at AT&T Center. Mandatory Credit: Scott Wachter-USA TODAY Sports (Scott Wachter)
Oct 26, 2019; San Antonio, TX, USA; San Antonio Spurs (from left to right) guard Patty Mills (14), assistant coaches Tim Duncan and Will Hardy, head coach Gregg Popovich and assistant coach Becky Hammon during the third quarter against the Washington Wizards at AT&T Center. Mandatory Credit: Scott Wachter-USA TODAY Sports (Scott Wachter)

You can add San Antonio Spurs assistant coach Will Hardy to the list of coaches the Knicks plan to interview during their search.

New York plans to speak to at least 8-10 coaches during a head-coaching search that will likely stretch into next month and conclude -- at the latest -- by the end of July, as SNY reported Tuesday.

The Knicks' plan to interview Hardy was first reported by ESPN, which stated that San Antonio had given New York permission to interview the assistant, who is well regarded within the Spurs organization.

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Ian Begley, SNY.tv Twitter | 

The Knicks plan to speak to at least 8-10 coaches during a head-coaching search that will likely stretch into next month, league sources told SNY. 

The search is expected to conclude before regular-season games begin in Orlando as part of the restart to the 2019-20 season.

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Oct 11, 2017; Charlotte, NC, USA; A general view of the NBA logo on the stanchion prior to the game between the Charlotte Hornets and the Boston Celtics at Spectrum Center. Mandatory Credit: Jeremy Brevard-USA TODAY Sports (Jeremy Brevard)
Oct 11, 2017; Charlotte, NC, USA; A general view of the NBA logo on the stanchion prior to the game between the Charlotte Hornets and the Boston Celtics at Spectrum Center. Mandatory Credit: Jeremy Brevard-USA TODAY Sports (Jeremy Brevard)

Ian Begley, SNY.tv Twitter | 

Players will not face discipline from teams if they choose not to play in the NBA's restart bubble in Orlando, according to a memo sent to players by the NBPA. 

Those players who decide that they don't want to play in Orlando need to inform their teams by June 24, the memo said. Here are other key points spelled out by the memo, obtained by SNY and first reported by The Athletic.

If a player chooses not to participate, his salary will be reduced by 1/92.6 for each game missed with a cap of 14 games even if his team plays more than 14 games. 

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 (Treated Image by SNY)
(Treated Image by SNY)

The NBA season has been suspended since March 11 due to the coronavirus pandemic, and discussions are ongoing about the potential resumption of the season.

Here's the latest...

 

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Tom Thibodeau
Tom Thibodeau

Here's our weekly Knicks mailbag with SNY's NBA Insider Ian Begley...


@NYCitee: Do you think Thibs is still the favorite as head coach?

People with a vested interest in the coaching search have thought for weeks that Leon Rose is most likely to hire Tom Thibodeau. I know that there is legitimate support within the organization for Kenny Atkinson, but I haven't heard anything that's led me to think Thibodeau isn't the most-likely hire.

Things can -- and often do -- change during the interview and negotiation process. So I wouldn't rule out the other candidates at this point.

Tags: Frank Ntilikina, Mitchell Robinson, Ian Begley
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Allan Houston (Allan Houston/Instagram)
Allan Houston (Allan Houston/Instagram)

Protests for racial injustice and police brutality are continuing every day across the country following the death of George Floyd. Many athletes have been involved in them. 

Knicks executive Allan Houston has been among them, and was seen yet again among protesters marching on Monday. Posting to his Instagram story, you can hear Houston chanting "I Can't Breathe," the words said by Floyd while a Minneapolis police officer's knee was on his neck for roughly nine minutes...

Tags: Dennis Smith Jr., Scott Thompson
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May 8, 2019; Milwaukee, WI, USA; NBA Playoffs logo on a Milwaukee Bucks bench seat prior to game five of the second round of the 2019 NBA Playoffs against the Boston Celtics at Fiserv Forum. Mandatory Credit: Jeff Hanisch-USA TODAY Sports (Jeff Hanisch)
May 8, 2019; Milwaukee, WI, USA; NBA Playoffs logo on a Milwaukee Bucks bench seat prior to game five of the second round of the 2019 NBA Playoffs against the Boston Celtics at Fiserv Forum. Mandatory Credit: Jeff Hanisch-USA TODAY Sports (Jeff Hanisch)

Ian Begley, SNY.tv Twitter | 

A handful of players involved in Friday's call over concerns about plans to restart the 2019-20 season expressed strongly that they would consider not playing, according to a source familiar with the call. But several people in touch with players in the aftermath of the call believe that the 2019-20 season will ultimately be restarted in Orlando as planned. 

"Some guys may sit out, but I'd be stunned if there weren't games in Orlando this summer," a source familiar with Friday's call said. 

NBPA executive director Michele Roberts told ESPN that players spent the weekend discussing how to enhance the current social movement against racial injustice following the killing of George Floyd. 

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SNY NBA Insider Ian Begley, in response to a Knicks Mailbag question, explains why Carmelo Anthony could be a viable free agency target for former agent and current Knicks president Leon Rose.

Tags: Carmelo Anthony
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Knicks president Leon Rose (Treated Image by SNY)
Knicks president Leon Rose (Treated Image by SNY)

Ian Begley, SNY.tv Twitter | 

The Knicks have hired New Orleans Pelicans scout Alex Kline, a high-ranking team source told SNY. 

Kline, 26, had been a scout with New Orleans for the past four seasons, with a focus on college scouting. 

The Athletic reported that Kline will work under Knicks assistant GM Walt Perrin, who will be responsible for college scouting. 

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Mike Woodson coached the Knicks to their only playoff series win in the last two decades in 2012-13. And now that the Knicks are looking for a new head coach under team president Leon Rose, Woodson's name has been floated as a possible candidate.

SNY's Jonas Schwartz and Maria Marino discuss the odds of Woodson getting the job again in the latest edition of What Are The Odds?

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Kenny Atkinson
Kenny Atkinson

Ian Begley, SNY.tv Twitter | 

While there is no specific timetable known for the Knicks' head-coaching search, there is legitimate internal support within the organization to name Kenny Atkinson as its next head coach, league sources tell SNY.

Atkinson is among the group of coaches expected to interview for the Knicks' head-coaching position. 

Tom Thibodeau, interim coach Mike Miller and former head Knicks head coach Mike Woodson join Atkinson among the group of coaches expected to talk to the Knicks about their vacancy. 

Tags: Frank Ntilikina, Kevin Knox, Mitchell Robinson, Ian Begley
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Since Leon Rose took over as Knicks team president, Tom Thibodeau has become a popular candidate to become the next Knicks head coach, given his close relationship with Rose. 

So what are the actual odds that Thibodeau becomes the Knicks head coach?

SNY's Gary Apple and Eamon McAnaney discuss in the latest edition of What Are The Odds?

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New York Knicks guard Raymond Felton looks on against the Denver Nuggets in the third quarter of the Nuggets' 97-95 victory in an NBA basketball game in Denver on Friday, Nov. 29, 2013. (AP Photo/David Zalubowski)  (David Zalubowski/AP)
New York Knicks guard Raymond Felton looks on against the Denver Nuggets in the third quarter of the Nuggets' 97-95 victory in an NBA basketball game in Denver on Friday, Nov. 29, 2013. (AP Photo/David Zalubowski) (David Zalubowski/AP)

Ian Begley, SNY.tv Twitter | 

Former Knicks point guard Raymond Felton joined Knicks Fan TV recently and talked about several topics, including two coaches who are expected to interview with New York during its head-coaching search. 

Here's Felton on Mike Woodson, who coached the point guard and the Knicks to 54 wins and a playoff series win in 2012-13:  

"I love him to death, he still should be the coach there in my opinion," Felton said on the show, co-hosted by CP of Knicks Fan TV and J. Ellis from The Knick of Time Show. "He's like a coach, a father figure, all of the above for me." 

Tags: Carmelo Anthony, Ian Begley
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Danilo Gallinari/Brandon Ingram
Danilo Gallinari/Brandon Ingram

Ian Begley, SNY.tv Twitter | 

Here's our weekly Knicks mailbag with SNY's NBA Insider Ian Begley...

Before we get to the questions, there's been no change as of Wednesday morning on the Knicks' coaching search. The club is still expected to interview interim head coach Mike Miller, Kenny Atkinson, Tom Thibodeau and Mike Woodson. Agents and coaches with a vested interest in the search still see Thibodeau as the favorite. Interviews are expected to start this week.

Other coaches, including Mark Jackson and Jason Kidd, have fans within the organization. But it's unclear at this point if other coaches outside of the four listed above will be interviewed. 

Tags: Carmelo Anthony, Mitchell Robinson, RJ Barrett, Ian Begley
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A general view of Madison Square Garden before a Knicks game (Adam Hunger)
A general view of Madison Square Garden before a Knicks game (Adam Hunger)

Ian Begley, SNY.tv Twitter | 

The Madison Square Garden Company posted the following statement on all of its social media channels on Tuesday: 

"Every one of us has a role to play in creating a more just and equal society, where there is no racism, bigotry, violence or hate. We stand with all who act for positive change."

The Knicks, who are owned by Madison Square Garden, received criticism from former players and media for being the lone NBA team not to release a statement or video message amid protests around the country following the killing of George Floyd.

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Dec 28, 2018; Minneapolis, MN, USA; Minnesota Timberwolves head coach Tom Thibodeau looks on during the second half against the Atlanta Hawks at Target Center. Mandatory Credit: Jesse Johnson-USA TODAY Sports (Jesse Johnson)
Dec 28, 2018; Minneapolis, MN, USA; Minnesota Timberwolves head coach Tom Thibodeau looks on during the second half against the Atlanta Hawks at Target Center. Mandatory Credit: Jesse Johnson-USA TODAY Sports (Jesse Johnson)

Ian Begley, SNY.tv Twitter | 

If the reaction from Knicks fans on Twitter represents the fan base as a whole, people are split on the idea of Tom Thibodeau as New York's next head coach. 

Some see Thibodeau as one of the keys to a return to respectability. Others don't believe Thibodeau is the right fit for New York's young roster. 

It's not surprising to see Knicks fans divided on the issue. When the team you root for has just one playoff series win in the last 20 years, you are probably going to be skeptical of organizational decisions. 

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James Dolan
James Dolan

With most major cities in the United States protesting police brutality and racial injustice after the deaths of George Floyd, Ahmaud Arbery and Breonna Taylor, Knicks owner James Dolan chose last week to not publicly address the situation.

Dolan later sent a second email to MSG employees, seeking to clarify his silence.

The email, obtained by SNY, began as follows:

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After taking over for David Fizdale, interim head coach Mike MIller coached the Knicks to a 17-27 record before their season was paused in mid-March and is now over. They were still under the .500 mark with Miller, but the team showed considerable improvement.

But now that Leon Rose is in control, it's likely that he'll look to bring in "his guy" to be the team's head coach, whether that's Tom Thibodeau or someone else.

So where does that leave Miller?

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Dec 1, 2018; Minneapolis, MN, USA; Minnesota Timberwolves head coach Tom Thibodeau reacts during the third quarter against the Boston Celtics at Target Center. Mandatory Credit: Harrison Barden-USA TODAY Sports (Harrison Barden)
Dec 1, 2018; Minneapolis, MN, USA; Minnesota Timberwolves head coach Tom Thibodeau reacts during the third quarter against the Boston Celtics at Target Center. Mandatory Credit: Harrison Barden-USA TODAY Sports (Harrison Barden)

Ian Begley, SNY.tv Twitter | 

During an appearance on Sirius XM NBA Radio, former Knicks head coach Jeff Van Gundy was asked about the possibility of Tom Thibodeau coaching in New York. 

Several coaches and agents with a vested interest in the Knicks coaching search believe team president Leon Rose is most likely to hire Thibodeau if he decides not to retain Mike Miller

Here's what Van Gundy told SiriusXM NBA Radio hosts Eddie Johnson and Justin Termine about Thibodeau, who was an assistant under Van Gundy in New York: 

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Mike Woodson
Mike Woodson

The Knicks' interviews for head coach are expected to start soon, with Tom Thibodeau, Kenny Atkinson, and interim head coach Mike Miller all candidates for the job.

On Friday, Begley discussed Woodson's Knicks past and his candidacy...

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Dec 28, 2018; Minneapolis, MN, USA; Minnesota Timberwolves head coach Tom Thibodeau looks on during the second half against the Atlanta Hawks at Target Center. Mandatory Credit: Jesse Johnson-USA TODAY Sports (Jesse Johnson)
Dec 28, 2018; Minneapolis, MN, USA; Minnesota Timberwolves head coach Tom Thibodeau looks on during the second half against the Atlanta Hawks at Target Center. Mandatory Credit: Jesse Johnson-USA TODAY Sports (Jesse Johnson)

Here's our weekly Knicks mailbag with SNY's NBA Insider Ian Begley...


@kickzjilla: Best coaching candidate for this young group?

Kenny Atkinson has a great track record as a coach who can develop young players. But I don't think the development record of the other candidates should be overlooked. The Knicks believe Mike Miller did an excellent job developing players with their G League team; Tom Thibodeau has plenty of developmental success stories to tell (Jimmy Butler and Taj Gibson, for example); Mike Woodson turned one of the youngest teams in the NBA into a playoff contender in Atlanta. So when you talk about the young Knicks, the easy answer to the question above is Atkinson. But don't dismiss the track records of the other known candidates. Also, a player development staff is only as good as the people hired around the head coach. So the coaching and training staff under the Knicks' next head coach will play key roles in the development -- or lack thereof -- of the organization's young players.

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May 14, 2019; Chicago, IL, USA; NBA Deputy Commissioner Mark Tatum reveals the number three pick for the New York Knicks during the 2019 NBA Draft Lottery at the Hilton Chicago. Mandatory Credit: Patrick Gorski-USA TODAY Sports (Patrick Gorski)
May 14, 2019; Chicago, IL, USA; NBA Deputy Commissioner Mark Tatum reveals the number three pick for the New York Knicks during the 2019 NBA Draft Lottery at the Hilton Chicago. Mandatory Credit: Patrick Gorski-USA TODAY Sports (Patrick Gorski)

Ian Begley, SNY.tv Twitter | 

The NBA season will resume at Disney World in Florida on July 31. The Knicks won't be there. 

So what does that mean for their position for the NBA Draft Lottery? 

The NBA announced that the 14 Lottery teams would be the eight teams that do not participate in the restart, like the Knicks, and the six teams that participate but do not qualify for the playoffs at the end of the regular season. In turn, their seeding and odds will be based on records through games of March 11. 

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Mike Woodson
Mike Woodson

The Knicks are planning to interview former head coach Mike Woodson during their upcoming coaching search, per SNY sources. 

Woodson, Tom Thibodeau, interim head coach Mike Miller and Kenny Atkinson are all expected to interview with New York during the coaching search. 

Woodson won 54 games with the Knicks in 2012-13 and won a playoff series that season -- their only playoff series win since 2000.

Interviews are expected to begin once New York has clarity on what will happen with the rest of the NBA season, with the expectation being that a 22-team format that does not include the Knicks will soon be approved.

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Kenny Atkinson
Kenny Atkinson

Ian Begley, SNY.tv Twitter | 

The Knicks' coaching search may officially start later this week.

The NBA Board of Governors is expected to approve a plan Thursday to re-start the season that doesn't include New York, according to ESPN.

Tags: Brook Lopez, Caris LeVert, Jarrett Allen, Kevin Knox, Mitchell Robinson, RJ Barrett, Spencer Dinwiddie, Ian Begley
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Feb 21, 2020; New York, New York, USA; New York Knicks guard Frank Ntilikina (11) dribbles the ball against the Indiana Pacers during the second half at Madison Square Garden. Mandatory Credit: Noah K. Murray-USA TODAY Sports (Noah K. Murray)
Feb 21, 2020; New York, New York, USA; New York Knicks guard Frank Ntilikina (11) dribbles the ball against the Indiana Pacers during the second half at Madison Square Garden. Mandatory Credit: Noah K. Murray-USA TODAY Sports (Noah K. Murray)

The Knicks weren't able to land any high-profile free agents this past summer, which led to now ex-team president Steve Mills and GM Scott Perry signing a group of veterans to short, expendable deals. 

Now, with a new vision in the front office with Leon Rose the team president, those players -- and even some others -- might be on the chopping block. 

In this series, we'll look at whether or not the Knicks should let these players stay -- or let them walk. We'll focus this time on point guard Frank Ntilikina...

Tags: Frank Ntilikina
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Tom Thibodeau
Tom Thibodeau

Ian Begley, SNY.tv Twitter | 

The Knicks' coaching search may officially start later this week.

The NBA Board of Governors is expected to approve a plan Thursday to re-start the season that doesn't include New York, according to ESPN.

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James Dolan
James Dolan

The day after sending an email to employees explaining why Madison Square Garden teams have remained silent regarding the death of George Floyd and protests against police brutality and racial injustice that have been taking place in the United States, Knicks and Rangers owner James Dolan sent another email to employees seeking to clarify his prior stance.

The letter, obtained by SNY, reads as follows:

Yesterday, I made a sincere attempt to provide my perspective on a very difficult issue, one that has no easy answers. I know how important this topic is to so many, and I do not want there to be any confusion about where I as an individual, or we as a company stand. So let me be clear: we vehemently condemn and reject racism against anyone, period. It is against every value that we hold dear.

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Feb 8, 2017; New York, NY, USA; New York Knicks owner James Dolan watches during the fourth quarter between the New York Knicks and the Los Angeles Clippers at Madison Square Garden. Mandatory Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports (Brad Penner)
Feb 8, 2017; New York, NY, USA; New York Knicks owner James Dolan watches during the fourth quarter between the New York Knicks and the Los Angeles Clippers at Madison Square Garden. Mandatory Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports (Brad Penner)

All across the United States -- and even overseas -- protests against police brutality and racial injustice have been taking place following the deaths of George Floyd, Breonna Taylor and Ahmaud Arbery. The sports world has been lending their voice to the cause, with the likes of prominent athletes in LeBron James, Michael Jordan, and Derek Jeter among them.

There have also been teams doing the same. However, the Knicks and Spurs are the only two teams that haven't released an official statement on the matter. San Antonio's head coach Gregg Popovich did, however, discuss the matter in an interview. 

According to ESPN's Pablo Torre, Knicks players and employees are "furious" no statement has been made by ownership. Owner James Dolan addressed that frustration in a Madison Square Garden Company-wide e-mail that SNY has obtained, and it probably didn't help curb it. 

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There's been a lot of buzz recently about the Knicks and LaMelo Ball, arguably the top guard prospect in the 2020 NBA Draft.

But what at the odds that the Knicks actually land him?

SNY's Maria Marino and Chris Williamson discuss during the latest edition of What are the Odds?

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