The New York Knicks have hired Tom Thibodeau as the newest head coach of the organization, the team officially announced on Thursday morning.
Thibodeau, who most recently served as the head coach of the Minnesota Timberwolves (2016-2019), was an assistant for the Knicks from 1996-2004. The NBA journeyman has been affiliated with seven different teams and two stints apiece with the Timberwolves and Knicks.
It has been nearly eight months since the Knicks parted ways with head coach David Fizdale after 22 games of the 2019-2020 season.
The hiring is the first big move for new Knicks president Leon Rose, who has been close to Thibodeau as a client for Creative Artists Agency, which Rose ran.
“Tom Thibodeau is a proven winner who gets the most out of the players and teams that he has coached,” Rose said in the Knicks’ press release announcing the hire. “He will bring leadership, accountability and a hard-working mentality to our organization. we are excited to bring him back to New York and look forward to collaborating with him and his staff toward a successful future.”
Over eight seasons with the Chicago Bulls and Minnesota, the 62-year-old holds a career coaching record of 352-246 (.589). His winning percentage is the 11th best in NBA history among coaches of at least 500 games.
Thibodeau’s accolades include NBA Coach of the Year for the 2010-11 season and serving as the coach for the Eastern Conference in the 2012 All-Star Game.
During his most recent run as head coach and president of basketball operations for the Timberwolves, he led the team to a 97-107 (.475) regular-season record over three seasons. He ended a 13-year playoff drought in 2018, a season in which Minnesota recorded 47 winsーthe team’s largest win total since the 2003-04 season.
“I’m grateful for the opportunity to return to this historic franchise as head coach and work alongside a talented front office that I have great trust in and respect for,” Thibodeau said. “I know what New York is like when the Knicks are successful and there is nothing comparable. I look forward to being a part of what we are building here and can’t wait to get to work.”
Thibodeau agreed to terms to a five-year deal, though the terms have not been reported yet.
Hear more from Thibodeau:
"This is a dream come true for me, this is my dream job"
– Tom Thibodeau pic.twitter.com/uqhP6w2kqm
— Knicks Videos (@sny_knicks) July 30, 2020
(Photo: Leila Navidi/Star Tribune)