New York Knicks officially name Derek Fisher the team’s next head coach
An incredibly successful run during a 18-year career where he was a member of 5 NBA title teams, Derek Fisher officially has turned the page on his playing days after officially being named the head coach of the New York Knicks.
Fisher becomes the 26th head coach in Knicks franchise history and team president Phil Jackson couldn’t be happier with his first big-time hiring as the Knicks basketball head honcho.
Fisher of course has a long relationship with Jackson, playing for the Zen Master when Jackson led the Los Angeles Lakers to five NBA championships.
“Today marks the next step of this journey for the New York Knicks franchise as we name Derek to lead the team as its head coach.” Jackson said, via NBA.com. “Our relationship began 15 years ago, and over time, it has come clear to me that he and I can form a great partnership once again.”
Jackson was previously fined $25,000 by the NBA for mentioning that he was targeting Fisher as the team’s new head coach while Fisher was still under a player contract with the Oklahoma City Thunder, but it appears the unplanned withdrawal paid off as Jackson got the guy he wanted. Well, the guy he wanted after his dogged pursuit of Steve Kerr proved ineffective after the former player-turned-NBA analyst spurned Jackson’s advance and instead became the head coach of the Golden State Warriors.
The terms of the deal between the Knicks and Fisher are reported to be five years, $25 million, according to an ESPN.com report.
While contract details have not been officially revealed, Fisher, who served as president of the National Basketball Player’s Association from 2006-13, is looking forward to the next chapter in his NBA life.
“I’m excited to embark on the next phase of my basketball career and look forward to coaching a Knicks team that fans can be proud of,” Fisher said. “It’s an honor to work alongside Phil Jackson, who is both a legend and friend as we strive together to reach our ultimate goal of bringing a championship back to New York.”
How the renewal of the duo’s partnership will play out remains to be seen, Jackson installing one of his own into the head coaching position certainly satisfies a situation he clearly coveted in his pursuit of the team’s next head coach. If team owner James Dolan can stay out of Jackson’s way, perhaps the Knicks can once again become an elite organization.
Or, given Fisher has no coaching experience whatsoever, the gambit will explode in Jackson’s face in a spectacular manner befitting the grand stage of New York.