Top 5 Reasons For The New York Knicks Successful Season

New York Knicks (Photo by Justin Ford/Getty Images)
New York Knicks (Photo by Justin Ford/Getty Images) /
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Tom Thibodeau, Mandatory Credit: Rich Schultz/POOL PHOTOS-USA TODAY Sports /

Tom Thibodeau has turned the Knicks around

I’ll admit it. I didn’t like the Tom Thibodeau hire at first. Like, at all.

I understood that Thibodeau was a New York Knick coaching alum who had success at the helm in Chicago for many years. I knew many people in the NBA landscape gave him credit for his defensive genius, player development skills, and no-nonsense attitude.

But, he scared me for several reasons. And no, not because he is always yelling and rarely smiles. I thought Thibodeau was dangerous for his players. I thought he played a significant role in the early demise of Derrick Rose. I knew he played his best players heavy minutes. I feared he could contribute to overworking and hurting players.

I saw his Minnesota Timberwolves teams consistently finish at the bottom of the league in defense. Don’t get me started on how he handled the Jimmy Butler fiasco. I questioned the impact Thibodeau can have in the modern NBA, and especially on a franchise that has been so poor for decades just like the Wolves.

Damn, was I wrong. And I am so thankful for it.

On the bright side, who wasn’t wrong about this team? They were supposed to win 20, maybe 24 games. The most optimistic few said they can push for 30. Thibodeau himself didn’t believe in this team coming in. We now know he wanted to trade Randle and Barrett for veterans. Imagine what that disaster would have looked like.

Despite the lack of confidence, he came in and turned this locker room and franchise around. Thibodeau’s defense became the team’s calling card. His offensive sets and rotations while at times questionable are a far cry from how bad the team has had it in recent years. The players rave over him. Julius Randle gives him a ton of credit for the improvements he’s made in his game. We probably wouldn’t have Rose on the team, who has been a crucial gear in the Knicks engine, if not for Thibodeau.

There isn’t a doubt in my mind anymore that any coach could have done a better job with this team. Who knows where the Knicks would be without him.