Do the Knicks Still Have Any Leverage Negotiating With Steve Kerr?

With Stan Van Gundy accepting a lucrative deal from the Detroit Pistons to become the team’s next head coach and President of Basketball Operations, the Golden State Warriors have lost out on one of their most desired coaching candidates.

As such, the wheels have been set in motion for Golden State to make one final last minute push at Steve Kerr. The former NBA sharpshooter is the Knicks’ most desired coaching choice, and it’s believed the feeling is mutual. That said, negotiations have stalled as New York looks to avoid overpaying for the to-be first year head coach.

But could the Warriors’ intensified efforts to woo the five-time NBA champ change that and put a wrench in the Knicks’ plans? What leverage, if any, does New York have left, if Golden State is willing to pay Kerr’s desired asking price?

Targeting Kerr to be the man with the plan who preaches Phil Jackson’s triangle offense wasn’t, and remains not, a bad move. That said, having no backup plans to fall back on is unfortunate. In order to maintain some sort of leverage in negotiations with Kerr, Jackson and co. should have been readily exploring other options, if for nothing else other than to gain ground during contract negotiations.

To truly gain control, perhaps the Knicks need to convey that they are just as content exploring a coaching option like Lionel Hollins, Byron Scott, or even former Bulls/Knicks big man Bill Cartwright.

Such a mentality would likely help, rather than hurt them, with regard to negotiating with Kerr. Having said that, even so, losing out on the TNT analyst still wouldn’t be the end of the world. Should Kerr sign with Golden State, there are still other worthwhile coaching options to explore in the interest of helping the Knicks realize success again.

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