While the Blazers move on to the NBA Playoffs, other teams are not so lucky. The New York Knicks fired Head Coach Jeff Hornacek immediately after the end of the season Wednesday. The firing, reported by Adrian Wojnarowski of ESPN, was not a shocking development after a 29-53 season. Other coaches are already under consideration.
Former Memphis Grizzlies coach David Fizdale, former Cleveland Cavaliers coach David Blatt -- now coaching in Turkey -- and former Golden State coach Mark Jackson are among the candidates that the Knicks are planning to contact, league sources told ESPN.
This is the second team that has fired Hornacek. Despite a good start in his first head-coaching stint, the Phoenix Suns fired him in February of 2016. Just 18 months earlier, he was the runner-up for NBA Coach of the Year, despite the Suns missing the playoffs. He received 339 points in voting, compared to just 25 points for Portland’s Terry Stotts, who also engineered a major improvement and eventually led his team to the second round of the playoffs. Stotts is still with the Blazers, who have reached the playoffs for five consecutive seasons despite a heavy turnover of their roster.
With Hornacek’s exit, the Knicks officially turned the last remaining page of the Phil Jackson / Carmelo Anthony era, and prepare to start fresh this summer.