According to Marc Berman of the New York Post, New York Knicks head coach Jeff Hornacek will be the head coach going into next season.
Despite the Knicks’ brutal record and growing input of Phil Jackson, who reversed the head coach’s offense, Jeff Hornacek’s job is safe, according to an NBA source.
The New York Knicks are currently 27-41 and six games behind the eight-seeded Detroit Pistons in the playoff picture. Their record is on par with the Sacramento Kings and New Orleans Pelicans despite Carmelo Anthony, Derrick Rose and Kristaps Porzingis being, in general, healthy.
Hornacek, who was hand-picked by Phil Jackson, has drawn criticism for trying to make players fit an offensive system that they don’t thrive in rather than playing to the strengths to the personnel.
It was always a curious fit that the Knicks would choose to have Rose, whose having one of his better seasons as of late, run the triangle system as it’s an offensive system that usually has point guards who thrive from behind the line as off-ball shooters. Unfortunately for the Knicks, Rose shoots 29.8 percent from three-point range for his career and has only converted 21.7 percent of his three-point attempts this season.
The triangle system, which is a read-and-react system, doesn’t seem to fit Rose’s fancy either. In Rose’s opinion, all of his points come from random offense according to Marc Berman.
“It’s a different offense,’’ Rose said Thursday morning. “As a point guard, you’re always in the corner and just got to play off reads and play that way. It’s new for everybody here. I get all my points off random baskets. Unless you see it go to the post, all the other stuff is just random basketball.’’
Another player who hasn’t been a fit in the offensive system, and it’s no secret, is Carmelo Anthony. Anthony, the oft-criticized New York-native who feels compelled to lead his hometown team to and through the playoffs, isn’t failing because he’s a volume shooter but because in Jackson’s opinion, the ball sticks to his hands too much.
Anthony, for his part, can’t believe that they’re still talking about the triangle.
Neither Rose or Anthony is guaranteed to return in the offseason. Porzingis, a versatile big who can post up and shoot jumpers is the best player the team has within the triangle offense simply because he’s a player, like Pau Gasol, who can help the offensive system hum from the high-post.
In the summer, Hornacek will be looking for players who can run the triangle offense. According to ESPN’s Ian Begley, Hornacek had this to say about the possibility of attracting free agents with the triangle offense rather than in spite of it.
“There might be players that think [the triangle offense is a deterrent], but there are also probably players out there that say ‘Oh man, I’d like to run something like that,'” Hornacek said Wednesday. “There are guys that may not necessarily like to run around and in [screen] staggers and all that stuff. It’s still an offense where guys, if they’re knowledgeable about the game, should like.”
It’s safe to say that Hornacek’s job is safe for now.