Knicks hire Wesley as executive VP, seek July coach decision
NEW YORK (AP) — William Wesley, known for his connections throughout basketball, has joined the New York Knicks as executive vice president/senior basketball adviser.
A decision on a coach could be next, with the Knicks hoping by the end of July.
New president Leon Rose announced the hiring of “World Wide Wes” on Wednesday, saying he has known Wesley for more than 40 years and considers him family.
“He is one of the most well-connected and respected people in the basketball community and he will be a tremendous asset and resource to both myself and the New York Knicks,” Rose said.
Rose worked closely with Wesley as a longtime player agent before he was hired by the Knicks in March, just before the coronavirus forced the suspension of the NBA season.
It was expected since Rose was hired that Wesley would have a role in the organization, though it was unclear if it would be an official title because Wesley has often worked in the background.
Together they will search for the Knicks’ next coach. David Fizdale was fired just 22 games into last season and Mike Miller finished out the season as the interim coach, going 17-27.
Both Rose and Wesley are close with coaches such as Tom Thibodeau and John Calipari, though the Knicks are planning an extensive search.
Rose detailed the process during an interview with MSG Network to be aired Wednesday night.
“We’re setting it up in two phases. We’re having shorter meetings to break the ice with the various candidates and then we’re going to have full interviews with the candidates,” Rose said.
“Mike is obviously one of those candidates. And we’re anticipating that we will go until mid-to-late July, and hopefully by the end of July we’ll make a decision, whether that’s to keep Mike or go in a different direction. But it’s very exciting.”
The Knicks also hired Alex Kline and TJ Zanin as scouts.