For the longest time, newly hired GM Scott Perry worked and dreamed for an opportunity like this one, and it has come at a time when the New York Knicks are scrambling to restore credibility to the franchise.
Perry has come a long way in the NBA, and although it’s his first time calling the shots, he is a very accomplished executive with high potential at being one of the best in the business. Even though the casual fan might not know him, he has had a hand in some of the most successful teams built in recent memory, and it is refreshing to know that the Knicks might finally be going in the right direction.
He has a history of great success — most notably assisting Joe Dumars in constructing a Detroit Pistons team that went to five consecutive Eastern Conference finals and winning an NBA championship. He also played a big part in the Seattle SuperSonics drafting of Kevin Durant (although that wasn’t much of a hard decision). Most recently, he was the Vice President of Basketball Operations with the Sacramento Kings, and he helped engineer an unlikely successful offseason for a team that had worst prospects than even the Knicks.
It’s easy to be skeptical of any moves the Knicks make — after all, the hiring of Perry comes with a grain of salt, being that he wasn’t the Knicks first choice to begin with.
Before the Perry hiring, the Knicks was close to an agreement with former Cavaliers GM, David Griffin, but the sides couldn’t come to terms because Griffin wanted to clean house and have the final say on all basketball decisions. Griffin put the pieces together to aid the Cavs to three consecutive NBA finals appearances, so it is understandable that some Knicks fans had a sour taste in their mouths when the negotiations fell through. It is also worrying that the front office wouldn’t allow a new GM the opportunity to hire his own staff. To fans and the ever so present New York media, it seemed this was the perfect example of the Knicks’ continued stubbornness to disallow new blood to flow through the franchise.
However, every story has two sides, and maybe in this instance, the Knicks found themselves hesitant to give Griffin the same power they just regained from Phil Jackson. Maybe three years of “the Zen experience” made the organization weary to give one man all that power. Jackson famously turned the Knicks into a laughing stock, and had budding star Kristaps Porzingis not fell into his lap in the 2015 NBA draft, he would’ve guaranteed his executive legacy as the worst in NBA history.
That cloud still looms very dark over the the front office.
Maybe the decision to not hire Griffin was not made just by new President of Basketball Operations Steve Mills, but by everyone left in the wake of the Phil Jackson era, who are eager for a chance at redemption.
So perhaps in their newly found conquest to make the Knicks watchable again, the front office finally hired a new face, instead of one stuck in their ways. Maybe after years of minimal success, they might have finally started learning from their mistakes.
The only way there could be progress is if they put their pride aside and stop shutting down new ideas. If they do this, the Knicks will head in the right direction.
In Scott Perry, the Knicks have gained a respected executive who could turn the franchise around, but only if they let him. With this hire, their is a small glimmer of hope surrounding this once proud franchise. Hopefully this time around, they have truly pressed the reset button, instead of hovering around it, because if there’s one thing that this devoted fan would like to get use to is to not hear the phrase “same old Knicks.”