Knicks Rumors: Agent Leon Rose to Be Named President, 'World Wide Wes' Linked

Scott Polacek@@ScottPolacekFeatured ColumnistFebruary 6, 2020

James Dolan, executive chairman of  Madison Square Garden, sits at a news conference next to the team logo where he introduced Phil Jackson as the new president of the New York Knicks, Tuesday, March 18, 2014 in New York. Jackson, who won two NBA titles as a player for the New York Knicks, also won 11 championships while coaching the Chicago Bulls and the Los Angeles Lakers. (AP Photo/Mark Lennihan)
Mark Lennihan/Associated Press

The New York Knicks have reportedly found their next team president.

According to Ian Begley of SNY, agent Leon Rose of Creative Artists Agency is "finalizing [a] deal" with the team. Begley also noted William "World Wide Wes" Wesley is being considered as someone who could join the team since he has a "strong relationship" with Rose.

Shams Charania of The Athletic and Stadium also reported the Knicks and Rose "are nearing [a] deal" after Adrian Wojnarowski of ESPN reported he "has emerged as a top target" to be in charge of basketball operations.

The Knicks announced Steve Mills left his position as team president on Tuesday, and Charania noted general manager Scott Perry would take over the basketball operations role on an interim basis following his departure.

That New York looked toward a player agent for the vacant role is not surprising considering Wojnarowski and Ramona Shelburne reported owner Jim Dolan was "considering" hiring from such a pool of candidates after it worked with Bob Myers and the Golden State Warriors and Rob Pelinka and the Los Angeles Lakers.

Wojnarowski also reported Dolan was "targeting" Toronto Raptors team president Masai Ujiri but noted he is under contract with the defending champions until after the 2020-21 season.

Marc Berman of the New York Post suggested Dolan's urgency in looking for a new team president decreased the likelihood of the team hiring Ujiri. "Dolan reveres loyalty and still isn't extremely keen on getting Ujiri to break his contract, requiring the Knicks to give up at least one first-round pick," he wrote.

Rose isn't the only player agent who garnered consideration, as Stefan Bondy of the New York Daily News reported B.J. Armstrong was "discussed internally" as a candidate. Armstrong won three championships as a member of the Chicago Bulls while playing alongside Michael Jordan in the 1990s.

Rose has relationships with many of the best players in the league. Wojnarowski and Shelburne noted Joel Embiid, Chris Paul, Devin Booker, Karl-Anthony Towns, Carmelo Anthony and Kyle Kuzma are among his clients.

He also represented LeBron James and Allen Iverson and has connections with notable figures of the Knicks' past:

The new president will have his work cut out for him in the Big Apple.

The Knicks haven't reached the playoffs since the 2012-13 season, have won one playoff series since reaching the 2000 Eastern Conference Finals and are only 15-36 this season. While RJ Barrett and Mitchell Robinson are talented, young building blocks, the once-proud franchise has otherwise fallen upon tough times as of late.

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