The Knicks were close, making the failed playoff bid sting all the more. New York finished with a 37-45 record, a game away from the No. 8 seed.
New team president Phil Jackson has already been hard at work restructuring the franchise to improve its postseason odds going forward. The organization swiftly fired head coach Mike Woodson in April, and the pursuit of a replacement is well underway.
That pursuit apparently centers around TNT game analyst Steve Kerr. According to ESPNNewYork.com's Ian Begley, the Knicks are currently leading a pack of teams with interest in Kerr's services:
Despite the full-court press applied by Golden State, the Knicks are still the favorite to land Kerr as the next head coach, a league source told ESPNNewYork.com's Ian O'Connor on Wednesday evening. The source cited Kerr's respect for Phil Jackson and said those feelings outweigh the lure of taking a Golden State job that would leave him closer to his California-based family.
Shumpert is one of the principal pieces making the Knicks job at all attractive. The roster is otherwise aging, overpaid and due for a serious renovation project. Still, this is the Knicks we're talking about. Win or lose, all eyes are on Madison Square Garden. It's part of what attracted Jackson to his new role, and it could also be a factor for Kerr.
It's also the thing that makes it extra difficult to stomach missing out on the postseason. Playoff staples like the Los Angeles Lakers and Boston Celtics were also absent from this season's playoffs.
Things could turn around soon enough, but the Knicks are still a work in progress. Jackson is also looking to round out his coaching staff and has been linked to several names, per Begley, including Jerry Stackhouse and former Chicago Bull Bill Cartwright.
Even with the best available coaches running the show, it could take the Knicks another year or two to straighten things out. There's no guarantee Carmelo Anthony will return next season, and there's a lot of salary clogging the books until the summer of 2015.
Things could get uglier before they get better, much to the chagrin of Iman Shumpert and his Twitter account.
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