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Knicks complete second round of head-coaching interviews

Knicks president Leon Rose watches his team play

Knicks president Leon Rose watches his team play against the Thunder during the first half at Madison Square Garden on March 6. Credit: Jim McIsaac

The Knicks are continuing to work through the process of the search for a head coach and have completed second interviews with all candidates.

On MSG Network last month, Knicks president Leon Rose described his process of conducting informal talks and then formal interviews with the 11 confirmed candidates. The Knicks completed the second round last week, holding talks with the candidates who are not headed into the bubble for the restart of the NBA season.

“We’re setting it up in two phases,” Rose said in an interview with Mike Breen. “We’re having shorter meetings, kind of break the ice with the various candidates, and then we’re going to have full interviews with the candidates . . . We’re anticipating that to go mid-to-late July. Hopefully by the end of July, make a decision.”

Tom Thibodeau remains the favorite for the job. Completing the process by the time the NBA restarts would mean that the Knicks would not have to worry about competition from teams such as Philadelphia and Houston, which have talented rosters and could have head-coaching vacancies.

Robinson moves on

Craig Robinson, who served as the Knicks’ vice president of player development and general manager of the G League’s Westchester Knicks since 2017, has accepted a position as executive director for the National Association of Basketball Coaches.

Robinson was not expected to remain with the Knicks, having been brought on by Steve Mills, who was dismissed earlier this year. The contracts of Robinson and most of the front-office personnel will expire shortly.

Virtual camp

This summer would have marked the 27th season that the Knicks have held a Junior Knicks Summer Camp for children, but with the COVID-19 pandemic halting the in-person camp, the team debuted a virtual camp Monday with Dennis Smith Jr. the guest for the opening session. Every Monday, Wednesday and Friday starting Monday and continuing through Aug. 14, they will host a session that is free to all children. Each week will focus on a particular skill set. Former Knicks guard Rod Strickland is scheduled as a guest Wednesday.

“It was definitely unique to be doing virtual basketball drills, but I really enjoyed the experience,” Smith said. “And it’s important that we keep kids engaged with the game that we all love during these times.”

New York Sports