Several teams have expressed interest in Knicks player development coach Royal Ivey, who is currently under contract with New York.
The Knicks haven’t made a decision on Ivey yet, but teams who are interested in Ivey believe it’s likely New York would have allowed him to get out of his contract to pursue other opportunities.
Last year, at least one team expressed interest in hiring Ivey for a position at the front of the bench, but the Knicks denied the club permission to speak to Ivey, a Queens native who is close to Nets star Kevin Durant. . The Knicks denied Ivey the opportunity to interview before Durant’s free will.
The club has been lagging behind in player development for much of the past two decades and there are plans to add more coaches strictly in development roles. It is possible that Ivey may remain in New York on the development staff, but teams who have an interest in Ivey are optimistic that he will be able to pursue other opportunities.
The Knicks have added five assistant coaches to Tom Thibodeau’s staff. There were originally plans to add a sixth assistant, but it is currently unclear whether New York will hire yet another assistant. If they do, it’s possible that Ivey or one of the other assistant coaches under David Fizdale and have that role. But a coach who was at the front of Fizdale’s bench is unlikely to accept a role at the bottom of the bench, where he would be the sixth assistant.
Under Leon Rose, the Knicks devoted significant resources to Thibodeau’s assistants and development staff. It’s a change from the previous regimen, when opposing coaches noted how small the Knicks development staff was for Fizdale. It’s unclear why the club didn’t devote more resources to development staff, but, once again, things have changed under Rose.
The Knicks have hired Kentucky assistant Kenny Payne and Utah assistant Johnnie Bryant for their staff, luring both coaches from coveted coaching positions to come to New York.