Last Word On Basketball

New York Knicks Firing David Fizdale

New York Knicks' coach David Fizdale gestures from the touchline during the NBA London Game 2019 basketball game between Washington Wizards and New York Knicks at the O2 Arena in London on January 17, 2019. (Photo by Glyn KIRK / AFP) (Photo credit should read GLYN KIRK/AFP via Getty Images)

As of the time of writing, New York Knicks president Steve Mills is understood to be laying the groundwork for the firing of their head coach David Fizdale, according to ESPN. The Knicks’ head coach is believed to be on the hot seat. The front office is mulling midseason changes amidst their 2-8 start.

Questions about Fizdale’s Firing

After losing out on big names during free agency like Kyrie Irving and Kevin Durant to their crosstown rivals, the Brooklyn Nets, the Knicks roster does not seem to have balance in the eyes of many. There is currently a logjam in the PG spot where Frank Ntilikina, Dennis Smith, and Elfrid Payton are all fighting for minutes. In the PF position, there is Julius Randle, Taj Gibson, and Marcus Morris fighting for minutes. The Knicks’ front office did not give Fizdale great cards to start off the season.

After starting the season 2-8 and with four 20+ point losses, Fizdale’s job is on the line. The starting lineup looks shaky at best with no clear rotations set. There may be a difference in the direction the team is headed in, as their young stars like Kevin Knox and Mitchell Robinson are only averaging a combined 17.8 minutes per game. When a team has players playing for their next contract and young players fighting for minutes, it is truly a recipe for disaster.

Knicks’ Future Heading Forward

No one knows what the next step is. After trading away Kristaps Porzingis last season, a failed attempt in free agency, and no identity on the basketball court, this team looks lost. Other than increasing ticket sales, the blame goes everywhere with this mess. The front office thinks the lack of a “consistent level of effort and execution” are valid reasons for dismissal. Despite this, they have reiterated to Fizdale that they have him on contract for two and a half more years. The story does not add up in New York.

Possible Replacements

With RJ Barrett being the lone bright spot this season,  they will need to bring in a coach with new ideas. This franchise has not had a winning season since the 2012-13 season and is searching for answers. A front office change has not seen changes to their fortunes and that will concern many of their fans. Mike Miller from their G-League affiliate is a good candidate. Keith Smart has been a head coach in the past, and Kaleb Canales was an interim coach in Portland–if they hire from inside. One name that could be brought up though is Mark Jackson. He is an experienced NBA coach and could at least steer this franchise in the right direction for once. If the Knicks end up firing David Fizdale, they will be stuck at a fork in the road. The Knicks’ woes continue for what seems like an eternity.

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