Tom Thibodeau is an excellent instructor. In the NBA yesterday. Today’s NBA is not a place for coaches like Tibs. He has a company. Doc Rivers is the same. They were both together in Boston when Rivers won the championship. This is as close as Thibs can get to the NBA Finals again. why? Here are three reasons.
Tom Thibodeau has been down since 2020-21
Please do not misunderstand me. Tepes is an excellent coach. He won Coach of the Year in 2021, helping the Knicks reach the fourth seed in the East.
Situations were different at that time. Julius Randle was the most improved player and went to the All-Star Game. But when Nix opened the garden gates, Randall disappeared, and Tibbs could not bring him back. The team finished with a 108.2 Defensive Rating that season, the third highest in the league. Unfortunately, this copy disappeared and was never seen again.
Today, the Knicks’ defensive rating is 112.9, ranking 29th in the league. This is from the so-called number one defensive coach in basketball.
So far this season, none of the Knicks players are performing as well as they should or even last season. This brings me to number two.
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Tepes is not a developmental coach
What the front office fails to notice is that Tibbs is not a developmental coach. During the 2020-21 season, the Knicks had two coaches who did not appear to have been replaced.
Mike Woodson and Kenny Payne. Woodson was the coach who led the Knicks to the playoffs in their 54-win season. After being let go, the Knicks did not return to the playoffs until 2020-21, when they did. The Knicks finished the season 41-31 in one of the most spectacular efforts the organization has had in some time. Until next season.
It was like the previous season hadn’t happened. Now you have to ask yourself, how much of the previous effort had anything to do with Thebes?
The 2021-22 season was the opposite. Was the departure of Kenny Payne the cause of Randle’s overall turnaround season? Randle is no longer an All-Star, but during this time, his coach didn’t sit him down when he was decked out on the court or was throwing brick after brick. But teammates were taken out if they missed a shot or made a turnover. Meanwhile, his star was nicknamed “No Handle, Randall.”
The result – a bad-tempered player who brought down his entire team. He even gave his fans the thumbs up. That season resulted in cries for Randle to be traded in the offseason last season. Meanwhile, Obi Tobin, Quentin Grimes, Miles “Duce” McBride, Jericho Sims and Cam Reddish sat on the bench, not developing for a team that really needs to start rebuilding.
Bottom line, what kind of coach places a player on the team’s improvement? This brings us to number three.
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Coach of the year no more
Before the start of the season, Alan Hahn sat down with Knicks Chief Operating Officer Leon Rose, who was asked about Tom Thibodeau’s condition. Rose said Tibbs was not under any pressure as he entered his third season as Knicks coach.
We make no excuses for anything that happened in the past year. I like Tibbs’ phrase: We’ll win or we’ll learn.”
New York Knicks President Leon Rose on Tom Thibodeau’s Job Security (September 2022)
Knicks is learning how to lose, Mr. Rose.
After these first 17 matches, we can’t help but wonder what Rose thinks of his coach. If Tibbs wasn’t on the hot seat, Rose definitely would be.
So far this season, the Knicks have been blown and blown, and still, according to their coach, “it’s OK.” Will the front office wait until the Knicks pass the point of no return?
This is a very good young Knicks team, including Julius Randle. Knicks fans cling to any young “star” who is rumored to be disgruntled. My question is why? With a Nix setup, it won’t make any difference. They have potential stars on the team now.
Before hitting the road, the Knicks players, led by Randle, had a meeting that seemed to yield some positive results. In the current West Coast road trip, the Knicks defeated the Utah Jazz and Denver Nuggets, giving each team their first home loss. But Golden State’s blowout and the Phoenix Suns’ 21-point loss after tying the game in the third quarter says more about the coach than the players.
Hopefully the looks on his players’ faces after Sunday’s loss will prompt them to do better on Monday. And after wins in Utah and Denver, there are no excuses for the weekend’s losses.
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