David Fizdale has agreed to become the next head coach of the Knicks, reports ESPN. Fizdale, who last coached the Grizzlies before being fired in November, replaces Jeff Hornacek, who was ousted by the franchise in mid-April after a disappointing 29-53 season.
Fizdale, 43, had been considered a top candidate for the Knicks’ gig along with former Warriors coach Mark Jackson, former Hawks coach Mike Budenholzer and former Cavaliers coach David Blatt. It was reported earlier Thursday that the Knicks were “zeroing in” on Fizdale, and now the two sides have agreed to team up.
The Grizzlies made the playoffs with a 43-39 record in Fizdale’s first season with the team, but stumbled out to a 7-12 start in Year 2 before he was fired. The team lost eight straight games and stirred controversy with the fourth-quarter benching of star center Marc Gasol before Fizdale was let go.
The Knicks are trying to build their next contending roster around young big man Kristaps Porzingis, who is still recovering from a torn ACL. The team also has Tim Hardaway Jr. and Emmanuel Mudiay, the No. 7 pick in the 2015 NBA Draft, as pieces to try to build around.