From day one, Steve Kerr has widely been considered Phil Jackson’s top choice as the next head coach of the New York Knicks. The past few weeks have subsequently resulted in Kerr’s name getting attached to multiple coaching vacancies around the league, including those of the Warriors, Jazz, and Lakers.
Though veteran coaches like George Karl, Lionel Hollins, and Byron Scott remain out of work, Kerr stands tall as a strong candidate.
At this point, that much is clear. Kerr is a sought after commodity. The question now becomes, why? As a former Jackson disciple from his playing days with the Bulls, it would make sense for the Knicks to hire him, simply because Kerr practices what Jackson preaches.
That said, what (else) qualifies Kerr a strong coaching candidate throughout the league? In wake of the success of coaches like Mark Jackson and Jason Kidd, past coaching experience was, somewhere along the lines, lost as a prerequisite to becoming a head coach in the NBA. How, where, and why did that happen?
Jackson and Kidd are two of the best floor generals ever to play the game. Each one’s knack for orchestrating an offense, as well as commanding respective from their teammates over the years, helped qualify them a bit more. Perhaps Kerr’s familiarity and credibility with the triangle help him in a similar respect with the Knicks’ position.
What’s more, everyone around the league (and the fans, of course) became familiar with Jackson’s beliefs, ideas, and general feel for the game by listening to him as an analyst. Has Kerr proven himself that way as well?
Still, such credentials would appear inferior to that of those coaches with actual experience on an NBA bench. Will free agent to be Carmelo Anthony and other prospective future Knickerbockers be impressed by Kerr’s presence? Should it make donning an orange and blue uniform more appealing?
All that remains to be seen.