Thursday 21st June 2018,
The Hoop Doctors

Doc Rivers Could, Maybe, Possibly, Consider Coaching Knicks If They Fire Jeff Hornacek

Doc Rivers Could, Maybe, Possibly, Consider Coaching Knicks If They Fire Jeff Hornacek

Doc Rivers

Plenty of people are wondering whether the New York Knicks will bring back Jeff Hornacek, who has one year left on his contract, for next season.

Los Angeles Clippers head coach Doc Rivers might, maybe, possibly, potentially be one of them.

From the New York Post‘s Marc Berman:

It would be an easier sell for Clippers coach Doc Rivers if Kristaps Porzingis didn’t tear his ACL three weeks ago to complicate the Knicks’ rebuilding program.

But according to a former Rivers associate, it’s not far-fetched for the one-time Knicks guard to have interest in the team’s coaching job if Jeff Hornacek, who has one year left on his contract, is let go after the season.

“Doc enjoyed his time there,’’ the former associate said. “He respects the city, he respects the organization.’’

Look, I get it. This is kind of topical with the Knicks slated to take on the Clippers in Los Angeles on Friday. But, like, damn. Talk about your flimsy limbs.

Speculating about a coach’s job security always makes me feel uneasy. Let’s first see whether the Knicks actually get rid of Hornacek before looking for his replacement. And even if he does get the ax, Rivers is, as Berman notes, under contract for one more season. The Knicks have no business giving up draft compensation for a head coach. Beyond that, would Rivers even want to lead them?

Kristaps Porzingis’ ACL injury doesn’t do them any favors. But he might not even be enough at full strength. Given the impressive coaching job Rivers has put together this season, guiding a band of role players through injuries and roster turnover and towards playoff contention, why would he want to leave? Because the Clippers decide to pivot into a rebuild over the offseason? Well, news flash: The Knicks are rebuilding, too. And they’re nowhere near a finished product—not with Porzingis sidelined until at least Christmas.

File this report under “Save for later…if at all.” Too much can happen between now and the summer for us to start sussing out Hornacek’s successors—particularly ones who are under contract with noticeably better teams.

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