Leon Rose Rumors
Q: Why is Leon Rose the right man to lead the Knicks? Mike Woodson: Leon’s been in the basketball world in a different capacity [super-agent], and Jim thought enough to turn his team over to him, and Leon has connections in terms of players throughout our league, and he’s been around basketball. That’s a big part of it. If he was a guy that was just an office guy working for a major corporation, no affiliation with basketball, it would be totally different, but he’s been around it all his life, and he’s made major connections through his relationships, so I just think it was a perfect fit obviously for Jim. Based on what they’ve done so far, it’s working, I think.
The Knicks had varied options regarding Robinson’s odd contract situation before the broken foot. However, league sources believe Robinson’s foot injury has elevated one option as a crystal-clear move for president Leon Rose.
Saturday’s injury in Milwaukee has changed matters considerably. The Knicks don’t know enough about the player they have yet. Or his durability after undergoing two surgeries this season and various ailments in his previous two seasons. A foot fracture for a 7-footer is also considered a potential red flag with possible recurrences.
The Knicks’ best option might be this, according to league sources: Exercise the $1.8 million team option in July before the draft, then attempt to engage Robinson’s new agent, Thad Foucher, to sign an extension after free agency begins around Aug. 1.
“I want to thank my Knick family for allowing me to get out of my contract and come home,” Woodson said Monday morning during his introductory press conference. “Jim Dolan gets a bad rap in New York. But he was a great owner for me. He allowed me to be head coach and he allowed me to come back to be an assistant. I want to thank (president) Leon Rose, Wes (Wesley) Scott Perry and Tom Thibodeau, who is a great coach. His beautiful staff they’ve assembled in New York has allowed me to do what I do now. They didn’t have to do that. I think them very much from the bottom of my heart. Everyone in that Knicks organization is first class.”