The New York Knicks will interview Los Angeles Lakers assistant Jason Kidd for their position as head coach for Marc Stein of the New York Times.
New York’s interest in the Hall of Fame player was first reported by SNY’s Ian Begley. And perhaps their interest is tied to something bigger.
According to the Newsday, some teams interested in adding Kidd to the bench think it could provide a connection with superstar Giannis Antetokounmpo who is expected to become a free agent in 2021.
Kidd coached the “Greek Freak” for nearly four seasons in Milwaukee, before being fired during the 2017-18 season. The former NBA guard helped Giannis transform from a 19-year-old boy with raw talent into one of the best players in the game.
“I was 19 when he came and told me he would put the ball in my hands,” said Antetokounmpo after Kidd was fired (Bleacher H / T report). “The first time I wasn’t ready. I said to him, “Coach, I’m not ready to make and play games for the team.” He said, “OK, we’ll take our time.” The following year he put the ball in my hands and I was ready. “
Knicks fans remember Kidd fondly for his last season playing in the NBA which coincided with the lone season in which the Knicks were legitimate contenders during James Dolan’s ownership. Kidd provided lethal three-point shots and veteran leadership to the team that won 54 games and moved to the second round of the playoffs in 2012-13.
Since retiring from the NBA, Kidd has coached the Brooklyn Nets (2013-2014) and Milwaukee Bucks (2014-2018). He achieved a career coaching record between 183 and 190 years. After losing his job in Milwaukee, he was soon hired as an assistant with the Lakers.
Kidd is the eleventh name to receive an interview for the Knicks head coach position, for public knowledge. He joins a long list of assistants from across the league, including Chris Fleming (Bulls), Pat Delany (Magic), Will Hardy (Spurs), Mike Brown (Warriors), Jamahl Mosley (Mavericks) and Ime Udoka (76ers) .
Tom Thibodeau has long been considered the front-runner for the job, while Kenny Atkinson is also considered a strong candidate. The Knicks will interview former bench manager Mike Woodson and consider current interim coach Mike Miller.