While introducing David Fizdale as the Knicks' new head coach on Tuesday at Madison Square Garden, team president Steve Mills and GM Scott Perry explained why Fizdale was their choice.
Explaining that they identified a series of characteristics that they sought in a new head coach, Mills said he and Perry "were committed to not letting any external factors force them to deviate" from the process they wanted to follow.
Mills added that when deciding on Fizdale, they looked at his basketball traits, his basketball integrity, his personal traits, his personal integrity, and his "ability to lead and communicate."
Mills noted that what Fizdale went through while being fired by the Memphis Grizzlies was one of the things they hit on during the interview process, and that Fizdale impressed him and Perry by being accountable.
"We all hit adversity," Mills said. "It's how you learn from it, how you deal with it."
Perry said the Knicks are getting a head coach with "a very high character" who shares the vision he and Mills have for the team.
"In going through this process, we were looking for someone who understood that this needs to be a sustainable effort," Perry said." A daily grind kind of effort in putting this team together."
Perry explained that they called former and current NBA players, coaches, and executives while vetting Fizdale, with those they spoke with lauding Fizdale as a "tireless worker," "innovative basketball mind," and "someone who holds people accountable."
"One of his strongest qualities is his perseverance," Perry said. "We believe that quality will transfer to our players moving forward."