The New York Knicks fired David Fizdale Friday, according to Adrian Wojnarowski.
Knicks fired coach David Fizdale, league source tells ESPN.— Adrian Wojnarowski (@wojespn) December 6, 2019
The Knicks also cut bait with assistant Keith Smart, per Woj.
This news isn’t shocking. Fizdale's job security came into doubt when Knicks team president Steve Mills and general manager Scott Perry held an impromptu press conference after a blowout loss to the Cleveland Cavaliers back on Nov. 10. In that presser, they said they believed in Fizdale and his coaching staff, but that they needed to see improvement after a 2-8 start.
With the Knicks now sitting at 4-18, they pulled the plug on Fizdale.
The Knicks are one of the worst teams in the NBA, going 17-65 last season. Quick math: Fizdale went 21-83.
The Knicks are currently last in the Eastern Conference Standings, and have the second-worst winning percentage in the NBA.
For NBA head coaches, it always seems like you’re on the hot seat.
Nearly half of the current NBA coaches have been with their team for less than two seasons.
The longest tenured coaches in the league are as follows:
- Gregg Popovich, Spurs: December 1996
- Erik Spoelstra, Heat: April 2008
- Rick Carlisle, Mavericks: May 2008
- Terry Stotts, Trail Blazers: August 2012
Since Stotts took over the head coaching duties in Portland, five Knicks head coaches have come and gone in a full-time or interim capacity. The next Knicks coach will be the 6th.
The usual suspects have shown up as the next head coach:
Mark Jackson, Jeff Van Gundy, Tom Thibodeau, Jason Kidd…
But perhaps another person who could and should be considered: Trail Blazers assistant Nate Tibbetts.
Tibbetts, who was promoted to associate head coach during the offseason after David Vanterpool departed for Minnesota for the same role, has garnered attention for other head coaching vacancies. In 2016 and in 2019, Tibbetts reportedly interviewed for the head coaching vacancy in Memphis. He reportedly interviewed for the Atlanta Hawks opening in 2018. He was also considered for the Cleveland Cavaliers job.
Could the Knicks be calling?
"He's earned a shot [at a head coaching job]," said ProBasketballTalk's Kurt Helin.