John Calipari knows a lot about winning basketball and he knows the Knicks are a long way from that.
But the Kentucky manager is cheering on their rebuilding, cheering for them to bring back a title to Garden. And he insists that his former assistant Kenny Payne can help Tom Thibodeau bring one.
“I want the Knicks to win, and I want the Knicks to compete for a championship, and I want the Knicks to win a championship, okay? My main concern in this is Kenny Payne; he’s like my brother, ”Calipari said in a conference call Wednesday, adding that Payne deserved a shot as a college coach and would recommend him as his successor for the plum UK post.
“I just wanted to make sure … Kenny understands that he’s leaving a big situation here. He paid a lot of money here, the highest paid in college basketball. Now, suddenly, it’s coming to the Knicks and it’s going to be a build. But here are its strengths; how will you use it? And Thibs was perfect. He went from point to point. … He knew why he wanted him on his staff. “