Remember just a little over a year ago, when Phil Jackson used to go two-thirds of a year hunched in a cave deep within the bowels of Madison Square Garden, sustaining himself on a diet of peyote and non-GMO microwave burritos, emerging only to briefly address/insult the news media and give strange, vague answers?
Those days are thankfully long gone! Today at 7:00 p.m., the Knicks braintrust of general manager Scott Perry, president of basketball operations Steve Mills and head coach David Fizdale took some time to talk with season ticket holders in a live town hall, giving some insight into the decisions made this offseason. To top it off, they got Mike Breen to moderate the discussion!
So, first things first: David Fizdale is a terrifically charming and candid human being, and while I understand he hasn’t coached a game yet and still has a lot to prove, I already like him about 10 times more than Jeff Hornacek:
David Fizdale says he hears excitement from fans on the street, asking him to “kick some ass this year,” which he responds— Knicks Film School (@KnickFilmSchool) September 17, 2018
“Damn right we gonna kick some ass!!” pic.twitter.com/Qwx2nUXtk1
Fizdale wants to challenge Knox by putting him up against great players early on so he can “get his butt kicked” and references Chris Child’s two-piece on Kobe, as example that Knox needs to go through some tough times to be great— Knicks Film School (@KnickFilmSchool) September 17, 2018
Knicks coach David Fizdale says that 14-16 players have been working with coaches regularly recently. “We don’t have clowns (on the roster),” he says at a team Town Hall meeting for fans.— Ian Begley (@IanBegley) September 17, 2018
A Knicks fan at a town hall meeting asks about the possibility of NYK having enough cap space for two max players. David Fizdale: “If our culture isn’t right, the free agent market doesn’t matter.” Steve Mills says there’s a change in how Knicks are perceived by people around NBA— Ian Begley (@IanBegley) September 17, 2018
Mills, Perry and Fizdale gave their thoughts on the new Knicks, from Kevin Knox to Mitchell Robinson:
Knicks GM Scott Perry on rookie C Mitchell Robinson: “He does things you can’t teach.” Perry says at a team town hall event that Robinson has the talent to be an impactful player. Perry adds that he’s confident NYK has the resources in place to help Robinson reach his potential— Ian Begley (@IanBegley) September 17, 2018
The panel had some time for questions from the fans, many of whom asked (predictably) about the team’s plans for 2019 free agency, which management (predictably) could offer little to no insight on due to tampering rules. Huge shout-out though to the first lady to get on the mic, who literally took two-and-a-half minutes to get off her question and automatically became a way better ambassador of Knicks fandom than the stupid crying kid or Infuriated
Knicks Lakers Fan:
Some other HUGE news: the Unicorn has landed back in New York! (And the Knicks clearly value him and his long-term outlook just as much as the fans do.)
Kristaps Porzingis is back in New York and GM Scott Perry says at an event for fans that Porzingis is excited about the direction of the organization.— Ian Begley (@IanBegley) September 17, 2018
Knicks fan at a Town Hall event asks if it makes sense for NYK to hold Kristaps Porzingis out for the season. President Steve Mills says NYK does not want to do anything that jeopardizes Porzingis’ long-term future, seemingly not ruling out the possibility that KP misses the year— Ian Begley (@IanBegley) September 17, 2018
Some other notes... Frank is totally jacked:
Knicks GM Scott Perry said at a team town hall event that second-year guard Frank Ntilikina has added 10-15 pounds during offseason workouts.— Ian Begley (@IanBegley) September 17, 2018
Culture was one of the words of the day:
Best answer of the night from David Fizdale on 2019 free agency:— Knicks Film School (@KnickFilmSchool) September 17, 2018
“If our culture isn’t right, the free agent market doesn’t matter"
Coach on his group of players: “I’m super excited…we took a week off after Summer League and they haven’t missed a day since. We have the kind of group that is going to move the culture forward."— NEW YORK KNICKS (@nyknicks) September 17, 2018
Most importantly... the Knicks are keeping all their picks for the foreseeable future!
Steve Mills:— Knicks Film School (@KnickFilmSchool) September 17, 2018
“We are not going to trade our draft picks”
The full interview was a good watch, so be sure to check it out in its entirety (the Knicks management troika enters to Imagine Dragons around the 12:00 mark):