Walt Perrin was the VP of Player Personnel for the Utah Jazz. He went to bat for players he believed the team should draft to create a championship franchise.
If the New York Knicks want to build a championship team, they need to learn from their past. Red Holzman was a scout the Knicks hired to find them a championship team. He found the talent then the team hired him as a coach to grow that talent. Red knew what pieces, what type of players were needed to build a championship team. He won two NBA titles to prove it.
Keeping talent and building around great players is something the Knicks just don’t do very well. They haven’t signed any of their first-round players to a second contract in the last twenty years. (Charlie Ward was the last). If they want to create a winning franchise, they can’t keep throwing away players, coaches, or front-office executives.
Perrin has a reputation around the league as being the type of scout and executive who finds players to build with for success. He has bought some great talent to the Utah Jazz in the last 19 years. Paul Milsap, Gordon Hayward, Mo Williams, Rudy Gobert, and Donovan Mitchell, to name just a few.
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This year the Knicks will have a lottery pick in the 2020 draft, a late first-round pick, and a second-round pick. Due to this devastating pandemic, it is unknown when the draft will happen. The NBA already postponed the lottery. Perrin’s job will be much harder this year. The NCAA Tournament was canceled as well as any NBA combines.
Around the league, there is only praise for Perrin, which isn’t always the case in any profession, let alone the NBA. There’s still that one or two who think it’s a bad idea to hire someone, whether it’s in the front office or as a coach.
Those in the know think these are the best hires New York has made in many years. I hope they are right, and the Knicks have found the right front office executives they need to build them back into NBA contenders.