Knicks Rumors: Thomas, Ujiri, Griffin, Presti

10:42pm: The Knicks have since been in touch with Griffin and the ex-Cavs general manager will be among New York’s initial interviews, Ramona Shelburne of ESPN tweets.

11:01am: Given how his first stint as the Knicks’ general manager went, Isiah Thomas would seem to be an extremely unlikely candidate to replace Phil Jackson for the team’s head front office job this offseason. Marc Berman of The New York Post confirmed as much on Wednesday, writing that Thomas wasn’t being considered.

However, at least one person close to the franchise isn’t so sure Thomas is entirely out of the running, according to Frank Isola of The New York Daily News, who says his source described the former Knicks GM as “a dark horse candidate” to fill the current opening (Twitter link). While that revelation may inspire some panic among Knicks fans, it’s worth noting that the “dark horse” descriptor suggests Thomas probably isn’t at the top of James Dolan‘s wish list.

Here’s more on the Knicks’ search for a new president of basketball operations:

  • The Knicks’ interest in Raptors president Masai Ujiri is real, but Ujiri is entering the second year of a five-year, $32MM contract in Toronto, says Sam Amick of USA Today. A source close to ownership of MLSE – the group that owns the Raptors – tells Michael Grange of Sportsnet not to even bother with the Ujiri rumors, but Grange hears from an NBA source that the Knicks will nonetheless be “coming hard” for the Raptors’ president.
  • Having received a second-round pick as compensation when Orlando hired away GM Jeff Weltman, the Raptors would certainly ask for even more compensation if the Knicks wanted to hire Ujiri, and New York would be very unlikely to consider that, according to Ramona Shelburne of ESPN.com.
  • A league source informed ESPN’s Dave McMenamin that Jerry West intended to reach out to Tim Leiweke, who is running the Knicks’ search, to endorse David Griffin as a candidate for New York’s opening. According to ESPN’s report, Griffin has “long coveted” an opportunity like the Knicks’ job. As of Wednesday afternoon, the Knicks hadn’t formally reached out to Griffin or his agent, but had begun doing background research on him, per ESPN.
  • Thunder president of basketball operations Sam Presti has been internally discussed by the Knicks as a possible target, tweets Ian Begley of ESPN.com. Like Ujiri, Presti is under contract with another NBA team and that club would likely require compensation, though the exact terms of his deal aren’t known.
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13 thoughts on “Knicks Rumors: Thomas, Ujiri, Griffin, Presti

    • fckphil

      Hinkie shouldve been the 1st interview. if Embid and Simmons dont get hurt he still has a job. Hes a Pop disciple and he has a plan, a backup plan and 50 variations of backup plans. Knicks need structure and The Process works.

  1. Krahril45

    Here’s an idea… how about you hire somebody that knows what they are doing as president of a team; Instead, just hiring the first ex-NBA Player you think of.

  2. dudefella

    I’m always stunned to see stuff in the NBA like the Ujiri/Knicks situation. How another team can publicly attempt to pilfer another teams employees without repercussions is beyond me. I could understand if it’s a promotion, but it’s not. It’s a lateral move. The NBA is a bit of a joke

  3. Dionis

    Please not Presti, he couldn’t even offer Harden the extra millions and led KD to leaving OKC. Get Griffin, he won’t have to deal with Lebron putting pressure on him to overpay for Tristan Thompson.

    • gmflores27

      Presti drafted three superstars in three straight drafts and it wasn’t his fault at all that KD left OKC. Griffin was only a mid tier gm in Cleveland and Presti is one of the leagues best

    • xabial

      With whose money Dionis?? It’s not Presti’s fault OKC owners are cheap. At least they got Steven Adams out of it ( the James Harden trade was out of his hands cuz owners wouldn’t spend the $$$ to retain Harden) In NY, he won’t have that problem. Dolan likes to spend his money on buffoons, but Presti’s picks won’t be. **** drafted Harden, Westbrook, (Wont say durant because 29/29 other GM’s woulda picked Durant) Presti made OKC respectable. Presti even available? You Take him

  4. formerlyz

    To be fair to Isaiah Thomas, the players he got ended up being good players. Just bad timing. Also, I think he’d do a good job in the league in today’s game, but probably not a good idea to go back down that road

    Sam Presti was doing a good job until he let Scott Brooks stay way too long, and then messed up a couple of years ago in the offseason, as well as matching on Kanter.

  5. hiflew

    Everyone: There is no way the Knicks can create a bigger circus.

    Isiah Thomas: Hold my beer!

  6. fckphil

    other than tank when Lebron wasnt there who did Griffin actually get…look at the Dion Waiters pick? was Tristan really worth the # 4? his picks other than 3 #1 overalls were just ok….Anthony Bennet was a car wreck.

  7. ships1941

    The Knicks would be stupid not to sign Griffin.
    There would be no need to give anyone draft choices or players.
    But knowing Dullman Dolan look out for Isaiah Thomas. Oy vay!!

    • Bob Knob

      Would probably rather have Isaiah as our point guard – instead of actually making any front office decisions….
      Sad – but probably true.

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