In what comes as a shocking move by one of the most curiously ran franchises in the NBA, the New York Knicks announced on Thursday morning that they would be replacing current General Manager Glen Grunwald, with former Garden President Steve Mills. Grunwald will still remain with the organization as an advisor.
New York Knicks owner James Dolan announced his shuffling of the deck in a statement to the press on Thursday morning:
“I am pleased to be able to welcome Steve back to the Knicks. He is a well-respected sports executive with a strong background in basketball, as well as a familiarity with NBA operations and our company,: Knicks owner James Dolan said in a statement. “We look forward to his leadership and believe he is the right person to help us reach our ultimate goal of winning an NBA championship.
“We are grateful for Glen’s many years of valuable service and pleased that he will remain with the organization.”
The Knicks bringing Steve Mills back into the picture raises several questions.
The first would be does this mean that Isiah Thomas (Sorry for the foul language Knicks fans) could be back in the picture as has been long feared by rational supporters of this team?
Let’s hope not, but the move certainly does open up the possibility as Thomas and Mills are apparently very close and had a great working relationship during the time that Isiah was here to destroy this team. All I can is if James Dolan is actually that out of touch with not only the feelings of his fan base, but reality, it would not surprise me one bit.
The second big question the hiring raises is could this spell trouble for head coach Mike Woodson?
Woodson and Mills do not have any history, so the hiring definitley doesn’t spell doom for Woodson based on Mills being here. What is interesting though is that Woodson suddenly has one less backer in the front office since he and former GM Glen Grunwald were college teammates at Indiana, and have a very close relationship outside of basketball.
I do not believe Mills will look to replace Woodson, but if the time comes were the heat is turned up on the head coach, he will have one less friend in a position of power to help save, or at least prolong his tenure with the team.
What makes this move even more surprising is that since taking over as GM for Donnie Walsh I actually believe Grunwald did a very good job. Considering he was saddled with the terrible Amare Stoudemire contract from his first day on the job, Grunwald, operating with very limited resources, did a great job the past two off seasons bringing in a good mix of veterans to try to compliment Carmelo Anthony and the Knicks primary players.
Hopefully for the fans of this team the hiring of Steve Mills is simply James Dolan bringing back a guy he liked, but of course, with all James Dolan related matters, who really knows.