Knicks bring back Isiah Thomas as consultant
Two years after being fired as team president and coach, Isiah Thomas has been rehired by the New York Knicks. He will serve as a part-time consultant.
“Isiah Thomas brings unique experience as a Hall of Fame player, coach, executive and owner, and we believe having him as part of our organization will be extremely beneficial to the team’s success,” the team said in a statement Friday. “Isiah was helpful to the team’s senior management during our most recent recruitment efforts, including assisting with the acquisition of Amare Stoudemire. He will provide valuable insight and analysis of young prospects from around the world.”
Thomas had a tumultuous run with the Knicks the first time around. As president of basketball operations from Dec. 2003 to April 2008, Thomas oversaw an under-performing team with an over-sized payroll. In Thomas' two seasons as head coach, the Knicks went 56-108.
He was also the main figure in a sexual-harassment lawsuit that eventually cost the organization $11.6 million.
“I was honored to have been asked to help during the recent free-agent recruiting process, and believe that this new role takes full advantage of my skill set as an evaluator of basketball talent,” Thomas said in a statement released by the team. “... I look forward to working with [team president Donnie Walsh], Coach [Mike] D’Antoni and all of the Knicks staff to help bring a championship back to New York.”
Thomas added that he will remain with Florida International University, where he went 7-25 in his first year as head coach last season.
-- Chuck Schilken
Photo: Isiah Thomas with the Knicks in 2007. Credit: Jacob Langston / Orlando Sentinel