As the New York Knicks search for a new head coach, Metta World Peace wishes his name was in consideration.
Metta World Peace, who New York basketball fans first met as Ron Artest, has never been shy in expressing his desire to coach the New York Knicks someday. While he doesn’t want to talk about taking someone else’s job, as the front office considers a long list of candidates for the position, World Peace thinks he would make a good hire.
“Listen, I don’t want anybody’s job,” World Peace said on the Battle for LA Podcast with Tomer Azarly and Ryan Ward. “I love sports. As you can see, I’m launching a sports company. You know, ClutchPoints has been very supportive. I love basketball. I told my staff if the Knicks job was ever available, I would love it. I would love an NBA head coaching job. The Knicks? Definitely.”
Originally from the Queensbridge Housing Projects, which is one of the largest public housing developments in the country, World Peace played at Madison Square Garden while leading St. John’s to the Elite Eight as a college player.
He could have easily ended up continuing his career in the Big Apple, but as Knicks fans know too well, New York passed on him in the 1999 NBA Draft to select Frederic Weis, who never suited up for them.
Artest, as he was known at the time, was selected one pick later by the Chicago Bulls. The 2004 NBA Defensive Player of the Year ended up playing 29 games for the Knicks during the 2013-14 season.
Metta World Peace believes his background would make him a good coach for the New York Knicks
“I was an extremely intelligent player,” World Peace said. “I’ve seen every single offense thrown at me because the coaches were trying to get me off of their best offensive players because I was like a hyena. I’ve seen every single offensive strategy to try to get me down.”
The Knicks are set to interview at least 11 candidates for their head coaching position. Recently-appointed team president Leon Rose is expected to hire former CAA client Tom Thibodeau, but there is strong internal support for former Brooklyn Nets coach Kenny Atkinson as well.
World Peace thinks beyond fixing things on the basketball court, as head coach, he would make sure the fans give the team proper respect.
“If I get the head coaching job, I told people I’m going at the fans first,” World Peace said. “I don’t like how they treat the Knicks. I don’t like how the New York City fans always put the Knicks under pressure. Right when we’re about the win, the fans gotta come in, start banging the drums, get rid of everybody, I mean, we’re building something here. That’s gotta hear that direct. People don’t like to hear that and that’s the type of person I am and that’s gonna be my first [agenda] and I’m gonna address that.”
The Knicks have started interviews via phone conversation, according to The Athletic. They could have a decision by the time the NBA resumes play in Orlando at the end of July.