Oklahoma City Thunder guard Derek Fisher has emerged as the frontrunner for the New York Knicks head coaching job, one day after the Knicks were spurned by former NBA guard Steve Kerr.
The New York Daily News' Frank Isola reported Thursday that new president Phil Jackson thinks highly of Fisher and believes he could transition to a coaching role easily if he wanted to make the switch. The hiring process would be delayed, however, as Fisher is still playing with the Thunder in the NBA Playoffs.
Jackson's plan would be to mentor a new coach with whom he has worked before, according to Isola:
Jackson's plan, according to a source, would be to assemble an experienced staff around Fisher which could potentially include Kurt Rambis and Bill Cartwright, two former NBA head coaches. Jackson thinks highly of Rambis, the long-time Lakers assistant, and there is a possibility that Rambis could be hired as a head coach.
The one reservation, according to a source, is that Rambis wouldn't make a big splash like Fisher or Kerr.
ESPN.com's Marc Stein and Ramona Shelburne also reported Fisher's name as a possible candidate, along with Luke Walton and Tyronn Lue, two players who played for Jackson.
Kerr, who was being courted by Jackson for the Knicks' job, chose instead on Wednesday to coach the Golden State Warriors.
"Phil told me 'you have to feel it in your gut,'" Kerr said, according to the Daily News. "This was going to be a life changing decision for me and something was nagging at me about it."