The Oklahoma City Thunder's season is over. That means that Derek Fisher's NBA playing career could very well be over as well. He'll take a few days to make that decision and then assess what his next move will be. If he retires and wants to join the coaching ranks he'll be considered the front runner for the New York Knicks job. However, he'll also be in the running for the Los Angeles Lakers head coaching job as well. How he'd do as a head coach is anyone's guess but Hubie Brown thinks Fisher has everything it takes to be a very good NBA coach.
Hubie Brown was inducted into the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame in 2005. The retired two-time NBA Coach of the Year is currently a television analyst. He is a large supporter of Derek Fisher joining the coaching ranks of the NBA and believes he can thrive as a head coach.
Marc Berman of the New York Post reports Brown fully believes in Fisher's future as a head coach.
Former Knicks coach Hubie Brown, on hand for the radio broadcast of Game 6, said of Fisher, “You’re not dealing with a typical basketball player,” citing his career as longtime president of the Players Association. Brown called Fisher “the total package.”
“He eventually moves to the Players Association where he becomes the president. You’re not dealing with a typical basketball player. You’re dealing with a guy with great intelligence. And he displays leadership with a team that won championships where he was not a starting player — just a guy who made the chemistry go and then had leadership in the union.
“I would say if you are going to take a guy who has never coached before, you’re at least taking a guy who players have listened to. That’s big now. That means under crisis when coaches aren’t there, you can control a room of high-rated players that are discussing killing a coach. He can control it.’’
Phil Jackson has already made it clear he'll be in contact with Fisher. There's no doubt that Fisher is the man Jackson wants for this job. Steve Kerr was the first targeted coach but the New York Knicks could end up thanking him for spurning them because Fisher may actually be a better choice for the job.
That being said, hiring Fisher isn't a done deal. Fisher could always decide to return to the court for another year. He can still score, he's a very intelligent basketball player and he's still a very solid perimeter defender. In fact, he'd probably be the best one they had if he were wearing a Knicks uniform.
If he returns it will most likely to the Oklahoma City Thunder. However, he could also decide to retire and stay home with his family. After all, he's been playing in the NBA since 1996 and has missed out on a lot of things with his wife and kids.
Fisher lives on the west coach. Being that the Los Angeles Lakers are also in the running for Fisher as a head coach the Knicks could find themselves losing out on their coaching target because of geographical positioning. That would be devastating for Jackson but joining the Lakers wouldn't be a bad decision for Fisher.
That being said, Fisher has all the tools to be a very good coach. Not only does he have the rings to command respect, he has the playing ability and knowledge to fall back on and the leadership and communication skills to get his message across.
No one will blame Fisher if he decides to continue his playing career. He's still playing at a high enough level to bring value to the floor. However, if he hangs up his uniform he'd be a wonderful choice for Jackson to hire as the Knicks next head coach.
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