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Tom Thibodeau wants to stay with Knicks as extension talks loom: ‘Where I want to be’

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In the context of a potential contract extension this summer, Tom Thibodeau professed his desire to remain with the Knicks.

“That’s something that my agent will take care of,” the coach said. “The Knicks have been great to me. So this is where I want to be.”

With no extension, Thibodeau, 66, would enter next season in the final season of his five-year deal and coaches typically don’t make it to lame-duck status.

They’re either extended or fired. A source expressed confidence that the Knicks and Thibodeau will come to an agreement but certainly nothing is for certain until pen is to paper.

NBA coaches salaries have exploded recently and a deal starting north of $10 million seems the going rate.


Tom Thibodeau reacts to a call at referee Marc Davis #8 during the third quarter. Charles Wenzelberg / New York Post

Thibodeau has led the franchise to three playoff appearances in two years with a 2-3 series record, including the Eastern Conference semis defeat sealed in Sunday’s loss to the Pacers.

He’s already fifth on the franchise’s list for wins with 175, below only Pat Riley, Jeff Van Gundy, Joe Lapchick and Red Holzman.

Both Josh Hart and OG Anunoby praised Thibodeau following the defeat.

“Obviously I’m not too up to speed on what it was before [Thibodeau] was here, but he’s been Coach of the Year [in 2021], got this team to the playoffs, got this team to the second round, and, barring injuries, could have gone further,” Hart said. “So I think you’re seeing the foundation that he’s built, but we know getting to be a championship team is not flipping a switch and one season you just get there.


Josh Hart #3 is greeted by New York Knicks head coach Tom Thibodeau  as he walks back to the bench to a stand ovation after he fouls out during the fourth quarter.
Josh Hart #3 is greeted by New York Knicks head coach Tom Thibodeau as he walks back to the bench to a stand ovation after he fouls out during the fourth quarter. Charles Wenzelberg / New York Post

“We know you’ve got to continue to build, and that’s something that he’s done, something he built the foundation for, and it gives this city and this franchise hope moving forward.”

Added Anunoby, “I think he’s a great coach, well-prepared. He does a good job preparing us, any game adjustments. He’s a great coach. I love coach.”


As he was leaving the locker room for the final time of the season, Josh Hart pointed at Isaiah Hartenstein and OG Anuoby before saying, “Those two better come back.”

Anunoby is expected to become an unrestricted free agent by declining his $20 million player option for next season.

The Knicks own his Bird Rights so can exceed the salary cap to re-sign him.

Hartenstein is an unrestricted free agent with the Knicks having his Early Bird Rights, meaning they can only go up to a starting salary of about $16 million if over the cap.

“I love the group,” Thibodeau said when asked if he wants to run it back. “As a coach, you couldn’t ask for a better group.”

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