Former Cleveland Cavaliers head coach David Blatt.
(photo credit: REUTERS)
David Blatt’s hopes of landing a head coaching position in the NBA next season suffered another blow on Wednesday with the news that the New York Knicks are on the verge of hiring former Phoenix Suns coach Jeff Hornacek.
Hornacek was fired midseason after an awful start in his third year with the Suns.
He was 101-112 throughout his tenure in Phoenix before management fired him over a 14-35 start in early February.
Blatt was considered to be one of the favorites for the role together with interim coach Kurt Rambis and former Indiana Pacers coach Frank Vogel, with Knicks president Phil Jackson reportedly being beyond “impressed” with Blatt’s “intelligence level” in their meeting.
Blatt guided the Cleveland Cavaliers to the NBA Finals last year before being surprisingly sacked in January with the Cavs leading the East at 30-11.
Blatt is known to have also held interviews with the Houston Rockets and Sacramento Kings. The latter hired former Memphis coach Dave Joerger last week and the American-Israeli also looks set to miss out on the Rockets job, with Mike D’Antoni, the architect of the Phoenix Suns’ celebrated high-paced and high-scoring offense a decade ago, emerging as a favorite for the position.
Should D’Antoni be handed the role, there will be only two remaining head-coaching openings in the league, at Memphis and Orlando. Vogel is the favorite to land in Orlando, while Blatt is not considered to be a candidate for the Memphis job.