Tom Thibodeau is one of the names most connected to the future of the Knicks. Many have esteem for him, but some also criticize several of his methods.
One of the biggest criticisms of Thibodeau is that his approach to practice and playing time wear out players. Whether this is a valid criticism or not depends on who you ask and their perspective on it. In a series of recent interviews, Thibodeau said he had learned a lot about practice approaches during a visit with the teams in the past few months. If you listen to these interviews, you get the impression that Thibodeau can adapt his approach to practice to keep his players as fresh as possible during the regular season and the playoffs.
“My experience last year in touring and visiting different teams and seeing it – and it has evolved this way probably over the past three or four years – there are different ways of handling the practice,” Thibodeau said in an interview with First Take.
“There is load management, there are sports scientists, there are situations where your kids are exercising a little more and your older vets are doing less and you are separating the two, and you are bringing them towards the end of the practice to do everything that needs to be done to prepare for the next game. So I think that using all the resources you have now, understanding how to use them, how to manage them, has become fundamental. I think the care of the players, the well-being of the players, those things are priorities. I think the important thing is, what does it take to be successful in the playoffs? And if we look at this, you start the season with those things in mind and get ready for the whole season. “
Regardless of how he approaches game time / practice time, several players have reported that Thibodeau’s work ethic as a coach is impressive. “He’s always in the gym; the first ever all the time,” said one. “He doesn’t stop working.”
This may not mean much to you, but it could impact Thibodeau players if he ends up training in New York.