Isiah Thomas will not be returning to NY Knicks


isiah-thomas-knicksIt seems like former NBA player, coach Isiah Thomas will not be coming back to the NY Knicks organization.

New Knicks president and GM Steve Mills confirmed the news, saying he has no plans to bring Isiah Thomas back into the fold, ESPN reported.

“No, Isiah will not be coming back to the Knicks,” Mills said Monday in an interview on “The Michael Kay Show” on ESPN New York 98.7 FM.

“I’ve known Isiah for a long time. I think he has a lot of good things going on in his life. He just finished getting his master’s at [the University of California] Berkeley. He’s on NBA TV. He’s doing a lot of community work through his foundation. I actually think with his background and what he was able to get accomplished as the president of the [NBA] players’ association, he’s probably an excellent candidate for the executive director’s job at the NBA players’ association,” Mills said.

In his previous term with the Knicks, Mills worked for 10 years as president of MSG Sports. He hired Thomas as president and general manager.

Thomas and Mills presided over the team during one of its least successful stretches, with the Knicks missing the playoffs in six of their seven seasons on Thomas’ watch.

The tumultuous period of the Mills and Thomas reign included a sexual harassment lawsuit filed by Anucha Browne Sanders. The Knicks’ former senior vice president of marketing and business operations successfully sued MSG, as a jury in October 2007 ordered Madison Square Garden to pay her $11.6 million after finding she endured crude insults and unwanted advances from then-coach Thomas. Thomas and Mills reportedly had a falling-out after the Browne Sanders trial.

Mills was demoted by the Knicks in the summer of 2008. Thomas was fired in 2008 as well but remains a confidant of owner James Dolan. Mills admitted as much Monday.

“Isiah and Jim have a good relationship but he will not be coming back to the Knicks in this organization,” Mills said. “We are going into the year with the hope that we can win a championship.”

Thomas, a Hall of Famer, has accomplished a lot in the NBA, becoming a 12-time NBA All-Star, and leading the Detroit Pistons team to 2 NBA championships in 1989 and 1990.

He played in 979 NBA games (971 started) – all for the Detroit Pistons, averaging double figures in scoring in all of his seasons in the NBA. He averaged double figures (scoring and assists) in 4 straight seasons.

Thomas averaged career high 22.9 ppg for the Pistons in 1982-1983. He also led the NBA with an average of 13.9 assists per game (also career high) in 1984-85.

From 1994, when he retired as a player, through 2008, Thomas stayed attached to the NBA as either a team executive, a coach or a television commentator, with a two-year break to run the Continental Basketball Association from 1998 to 2000.

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