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Knicks Hire Old Enemy Tim Hardaway As Scout

The Knicks welcome a former rival into the fold after several intense battles near the turn of the century.

The heat has officially died down in the New York-Miami basketball rivalry.

As first reported by Marc Berman of the New York Post, Hall of Famer Tim Hardaway has been working in the New York Knicks scouting department for the past year. Hardaway was previously one of the most hated opponents of the Knicks' turn of the century prosperity, one of the faces of the Miami Heat during the teams' postseason clashes that balanced physicality and excitement.


News of the hire comes less than a week after the 25th anniversary of the first playoff series between New York and Miami, a seven-game conference semifinal classic best known for a bench-clearing brawl in the fifth game. Hardaway was involved in the incident that indirectly started the battle as the victim of a hard pick from Charles Oakley. 

Partly aided by New York suspensions stemming from the braw the Heat erased a 3-1 deficit to advance to the Eastern Conference Finals, a series punctuated by Hardaway's 38-point showing in Game 7. The Knicks, however, earned the last laugh against the Hardaway Heat era, winning each of the next three matchups. Notably, the Knicks became the first team in NBA history to take down a top-two seed in consecutive opening rounds (1998-99) with Miami being the victim each time.

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This isn't the first time that the Hardaway family has let bygones be bygones with the Knicks: the five-time All-Star's son, current Dallas Maverick Tim Jr., was drafted by the team in the first round of the 2014 draft and spent two seasons with the team.

The elder Hardaway, a 14-year NBA veteran, previously spent four seasons as an assistant coach with the Detroit Pistons (2014-18), as well as the player/coach of the Florida Pit Bulls in the semi-pro ABA (2005-06).

Hardaway will likely play a role in the Knicks' decisions at the 2022 NBA Draft on June 23, where they're currently slated to choose 11th.