One member of the Derek Fisher Duo will remain with the Knicks after all. Assist coach David Bliss will be retained for next season, according to the Daily News. The news come on the heels of a report that the other remaining assistant from the Fisher years, Josh Longstaff, will not be back at MSG next season.
Both Longstaff and Bliss were popular with a certain young gentleman named Kristaps Porzingis. The 6’10” Bliss has become Porzingis’s primary practice sparring partner. The Knicks young big man paid some Bliss some serious compliments last season in an interview with Bleacher Report:
"Going against a guy like Dave every day has been huge for me and my improvement. He's big and physical with me-and that's been the toughest thing for me to deal with since coming into the league, so we work on that every day, but he's also always talking to me, giving me advice.
"Sometimes I get mad at him and we fight," Porzingis added. "But it's all good. He's just trying to make me better. He's exactly the kind of coach you want around."
Meanwhile, the Post reported that the decision not to retain Longstaff had been made long ago, and was not spur-of-the-moment revenge move by Jackson against Kristaps. That’s comforting!
Longstaff was not on the same wavelength as Team Triangle apparently, according to Marc Berman:
Two sources said the 33-year-old Longstaff, for all his acclaim as a good workout guy with young players, had difficulty blending in with Knicks coaches he had not worked with in Oklahoma City during his three seasons at the Garden.
Cool. Now hire Pablo Prigioni already!