On Tuesday morning, ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski reported that the Knicks had completed their interview process for their head coaching vacancy, having most recently spoken to Warriors assistant Mike Brown.
But maybe the most interesting aspect of Woj’s report wasn’t the fact that the Knicks are done searching for Jeff Hornacek’s successor but rather just how wide a net the franchise cast in the first place. Woj lists 11 different coaches whom the Knicks have spoken to, from experienced head coaches to complete novices. Here they are, in rough order of qualification for the job:
- Mike Budenholzer — Former Hawks coach (and Spurs assistant) who led Atlanta to four straight playoff berths before the franchise’s tank-tastic 2017-18 campaign
- David Fizdale — Former Grizzlies coach (and Heat assistant) fired abruptly midway through his second season in Memphis
- Mike Brown — Warriors assistant and former Lakers and Cavs head coach who has a strong career win-loss record (347-216) but a reputation for underachieving with star players
- Jerry Stackhouse — Former NBA All-Star establishing himself as a hot coaching commodity while leading the G League team Raptors 905
- Mike Woodson — Clippers assistant who went 109-79 the last time he coached the Knicks
- Mark Jackson — Immensely polarizing coach, currently working at ESPN, who either set up the Warriors for the Steve Kerr era or held them back until Kerr took over
- Jay Larrañaga — Celtics assistant with head coaching experience in the G League and in international play
- David Blatt — Highly successful coach overseas whose tenure leading the Cavaliers was an adventure, to say the least
- James Borrego — Spurs assistant and former Magic interim head coach who has also reportedly interviewed for the Suns’ opening
- Juwan Howard — Ex-NBA forward currently who has worked as a Heat assistant since 2013
- Kenny Smith — TNT basketball analyst with no coaching experience whatsoever
It’s worth noting that Woj doesn’t present that list as if it’s definitively complete. It’s possible that the Knicks have actually spoken to even more candidates than the 11 above.
So who will the team choose? Woj reports that officials are huddling now in an attempt to find consensus. Smart money is probably on Budenholzer, but when it comes to the Knicks, you can never be sure.