David Fizdale on hot-seat status: ‘I own my own crap’
David Fizdale is squarely on the hot seat amid an Eastern Conference-worst 2-8 start, but the embattled New York Knicks head coach continues to insist he’s hearing nothing but encouragement from the front office.
Fizdale must be speaking from a personal, private perspective, as team president Steve Mills made the foreboding decision to hold an impromptu press conference following Sunday’s demoralizing 108-87 loss to the Cleveland Cavaliers. Mills, among other things, said Knicks brass is “unhappy where we are’’ at this point of the season.
Then came a damning report from ESPN that indicated the presser amounted to the Knicks front office laying the “internal groundwork” for Fizdale’s eventual dismissal.
Amid all the conjecture about his evident lack of job security, Fizdale was asked about the ESPN report following Monday’s practice. As he has on a few occasions already this season, Fizdale downplayed the severity of the situation despite the firestorm.
“I haven’t seen anything like that. I’m not feeling that,” Fizdale said, per Greg Joyce of the New York Post. “They’ve been very supportive to me.”
The narrative surrounding Fizdale’s purportedly tenuous hold on his job is how Mills and general manager Scott Perry believe that Fizdale should be getting more out of the roster that they assembled. Further, they are said to be telling Knicks owner James Dolan as much as well.
Despite all the outside noise, Fizdale blew off the notion that the Knicks front office — with whom he was spotted chatting and laughing with during Monday’s practice — is setting him up to be the fall guy.
“None of us have an ego about it,” Fizdale said. “We’re all on the same page with where we’re trying to get to. At the end of the day, we’re all in this together.”
In the end, Fizdale recognizes the onus is on him to get things turned around — should he be provided the opportunity to do so — insisting he’s is own worst critic.
“I own my own crap,” Fizdale said. “This team is my responsibility, and if they’re not playing up to that level, I take full responsibility for that.”