Through the NBA rumor mill, Tom Thibodeau has been somewhat indirectly tied to being the next coach of the New York Knicks for a while now. But there’s a new rumor circulating that says a deal has been made for Tom Thibodeau to be the head coach of the Knicks next season.
The story was first reported by Mitch Lawrence of the New York Daily News; the same reporter who accurately stated the Bulls were going to trade Luol Deng, even though the story was refuted – initially – by the local media.
Thibodeau was one of the people who weren’t on board with the Deng trade and has been at odds with management for a while now. And the fact that he was a member of Jeff Van Gundy’s staff in New York in the 90’s, his association with CAA – the same agency that represents Knicks star Carmelo Anthony – and the way he quickly turned the Bulls into a contender, it makes sense that the Knicks would like to bring him on board.
Thibodeau, of course, shot the rumor down after the Bulls win over the Charlotte Bobcats on Saturday night.
“Come on, now. Come on,” Thibodeau said when confronted with the rumor. “That stuff’s ridiculous. It really is. First, I was being traded. I could care less about that stuff. I’ve said it before: I love this team, I love the guys that we have and I love the fighting spirit of this team, so that’s all I’m thinking about.”
Of course, there’s the issue of tampering if all of this proves to be true – which in itself would be very difficult to prove. But if it were, the matter would have serious implications for both Thibodeau and the Knicks brass.
But it’s just one of those stories that isn’t going away and it makes you wonder if this truly is the last season we’ll see Tom Thibodeau roaming the sidelines as the Bulls head coach, even if he does have another $18 million left on his contract.