According to reports, former Lakers star and Mr. Point Four himself Derek Fisher has agreed to become the next Head Coach of the New York Knicks. Fisher will now team up with his former coach Phil Jackson in New York.
Adrian Wojnarowski of Yahoo! Sports is reporting that the deal is worth 5-years, $25 million.
For a first time head coach it’s an extravagant deal. For comparisons sake, Jason Kidd agreed to a 4-year, $10.5 million deal with the Brooklyn Nets just last season. However, Steve Kerr agreed to a similar deal, in terms of length and dollars, with the Golden State Warriors just last month. Basically what this means is that their is a significant premium for ex-players of Phil Jackson. Championship pedigree can be measured after all. It’s worth about 1-year and $15 million.
This means that Derek Fisher is officially going to retire from the NBA and what a career he has had. Fisher is the all-time leader in playoff games played with 259, though that number may be eclipsed by Tim Duncan in the next two seasons. D Fish, as he’s referred to in Los Angeles, is a 5x NBA champion, having won with the Lakers in 2000, 2001, 2002, 2009, and 2010.
Fisher will now take on the monumental task of coaching the New York Knicks, which is one of the three of four toughest head coaching positions in the NBA, along with the Lakers, Celtics, and Bulls. Throw in the pressure of coaching in New York and dealing with the media, not to mention James Dolan, and this may well be the toughest assignment in the NBA.
However, Fisher is one of the brightest players the NBA has seen in some time and will run the triangle offense, which is something that Jackson desperately wanted. Fisher and Jackson obviously have a very close relationship, having been partnered up for 10 seasons in Los Angeles. Fisher, who was once the president of the NBAPA, is a natural leader and is well positioned to be a successful NBA head coach.
According to Howard Beck, Fisher is likely to add a bunch of former Lakers to his coaching staff. Kurt Rambis, who was once himself the coach of the Lakers, is likely to be added to the staff, along with other Lakers such as Rick Fox and Luke Walton.
Will Derek Fisher be a successful NBA coach? Time will tell. A lot of it will depend on the decision of Carmelo Anthony and how Phil Jackson decides to build up the Knicks roster. Don’t be surprised if it ends up looking a little bit like Lakers east.