Knicks Coach Tom Thibodeau’s Job Security in Doubt: Report

Tom Thibodeau, New York Knicks

Getty Head coach Tom Thibodeau talks with Jalen Brunson of the New York Knicks.

The New York Knicks season is here, and the rumor mill is already churning about coach Tom Thibodeau’s job security.

Thibodeau saw a lot of success with the Bulls and Timberwolves in the past, and he’s even seen some in New York, but there are many fans who would love to see him go.

Speaking to Heavy Sports’ Sean Deveney, an Eastern Conference executive gave some insight into what Thibodeau’s job security looks like going forward. The executive mentions that last season was a “disaster” for the Knicks, but Thibodeau managed to survive it.

“He survived last year and that was a disaster,” the exec told Deveney. “But they were not going to fix anything by firing him anyway.”

That might seem to indicate Thibodeau is here to stay, but the executive doesn’t believe it’s that simple.

Thibodeau Could be in Jeopardy

If the Knicks struggle out of the gate, there could be some big changes that get made, including trades.

Somebody who could find themselves not surviving the season is Thibodeau himself, and that’s something to keep an eye on as things shake out.

“This year, it is different,” the exec continued. “They need to make some progress, play the young guys, show some development. He has this year and then next year is the last year on his deal. They’d fire him with one year left, they did not want to fire him with two years left. So, they get off to a good start and he’ll be fine but if they struggle, that could be a problem.”

Adding Jalen Brunson to the team brings an anchor to the point guard spot, and the team should be all the better for it. However, they aren’t expected to be a team that’s competing for a top spot in the Eastern Conference. Them getting into the play-in tournament isn’t a guarantee, and that opens things up to the 10th seed.

The Knicks still need to make progress this year, and there’s no question they are a better team than they were last season.

Young Players Need to Develop

A key thing to look out for the Knicks going forward is how the youngsters develop. RJ Barrett averaged 20 points per game last season, and that number has a chance at going up with a consistent playmaker and scorer in the back court with him

Obi Toppin has looked good in the preseason, but his minutes will remain a factor going forward because there’s no guarantee he’ll get them over Randle. If Randle does find himself struggling to start the season, perhaps Toppin will cut into them.

Thibodeau has a lot on the line this season, so if the team isn’t making much traction in the wins department, he’ll have to find other ways to prove to the team he’s worth sticking with. Developing young players is a big way to do that, but even that might not even be enough in the end.

It will definitely be something that’s interesting to look at the season goes on.