The New York Knicks confirm appointment of Jeff Hornacek as new head coach

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The New York Knicks have officially confirmed Jeff Hornacek as the team's new head coach. 

Though the team didn't reveal details of the contract, ESPN reports that the two parties have agreed on a three-year, $15 million deal. 

The 53-year-old becomes the franchise's fifth coach in the last five seasons. 

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This will be Hornacek's second head coaching role in the league after his previous stint with the Phoenix Suns where he spent the best part of three seasons from 2013 to 2016, before being fired at the beginning of this campaign. 

It is no secret that Knicks president Phil Jackson wanted to bring in a coach who would operate the triangle offence that he favours.

Hornacek has no previous experience of playing that system so it will be interesting to see if the Zen Master changed his stance and has opted for a change. 

“Jeff has a tremendous basketball acumen and possesses strong leadership skills,” Jackson said. “During his career as both a player and coach, he has demonstrated the ability to elevate the game.”

The former Suns coach replaces Derek Fisher whose tenure in the Big Apple was cut short in February, with Kurt Rambis taking charge on an interim basis for the remainder of the year. 

"I am extremely excited and honoured to be the next coach of such an historic franchise,” Hornacek said. "I look forward to working with Phil - a coach and teacher of the game I have admired for many years - and collaborating with him and our staff to take this team to the level that Knicks fans expect."

In his first season in Phoenix, Hornacek led the team to 48 wins as they narrowly missed out on the playoffs.  

He deployed a fast-paced style where his teams would push the ball at every opportunity and get out in transition.  

Star player Carmelo Anthony has already spoken of his excitement of working with the new coach and playing in this type of offence.  

Earlier this week, veteran point guard Jose Calderon also mentioned how he's looking forward to playing under Hornacek and enjoying himself again on the court.

"I'm happy to have a coach, I'm happy he is an ex-player as well," Calderon said, per NBC Sports. "It's always kind of good to kind of get a relation with what you're going through, so sometimes that's good. And, they played really good in Phoenix. You know, really fun basketball. Hopefully, we can play that way and have a little fun out there."

Madison Square Garden has not played host to playoff basketball for the last three years and Hornacek's main task for the campaign will be to get the team back into the postseason. 

As the biggest market in the league, the expectations of New York fans are always high and therefore Hornacek will not be allowed a long honeymoon period. 

Largely due to the failures of the men that have gone before him, the new head coach will be under pressure to win immediately, but he is aware of what he signed up for.

New York Knicks
Atlantic Division
Eastern Conference
Carmelo Anthony
Robin Lopez
Jose Calderon

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