Derek Fisher hired as New York Knicks head coach

Ronald Martinez

The 18-year pro will go straight from the court to the top spot on Phil Jackson's bench.

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Derek Fisher will accept the New York Knicks' head coaching job, according to Bleacher Report's Howard Beck. A press conference could be held as soon as Tuesday, according to Frank Isola of the New York Daily News.

Fisher will receive a five-year deal for $25 million, according to Yahoo! Sports' Adrian Wojnarowski. That's the same contract that Steve Kerr received to coach the Golden State Warriors. Kerr was team president Phil Jackson's top choice to coach the club, but chose the Warriors instead.

The Knicks' interest in Fisher was evident even before his 2013-14 season as a player ended. Knicks president Phil Jackson was fined for noting Fisher as a top candidate for the position while he was still under contract with the Thunder. Once the Thunder's season ended, the Knicks moved quickly to meet with Fisher and hash out an arrangement for him to become the team's next head coach.

Fisher appealed to Jackson as one of his longtime players, and he's expected to install much of Jackson's triangle offense as the Knicks' coach. His potential staff provides a clue about his team's style of play.

Jackson does not have many former assistants coaching in the league, making his search difficult. Brian Shaw, his longtime lead assistant, is under contract as the Nuggets' coach, and few other assistants currently have jobs. Kerr immediately emerged as Jackson's top candidate, but after supposedly giving Jackson a verbal commitment, Kerr chose the Warriors' opening instead. The Knicks never seriously looked at other candidates after that, zeroing in on Fisher quickly.

Fisher inherits an unsettled roster that may or may not include Carmelo Anthony. The Knicks' star is a free agent, and it is unclear if he wants to return to New York or if Jackson wants to pay him a hefty max contract. With or without Anthony, Fisher must get more out of a Knicks roster that underachieved last season.

Fisher becomes the second former player to immediately become a head coach for a New York team. The Nets hired Jason Kidd last season straight out of his playing career.

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