The Knicks’ addition of Isiah Thomas as a team consultant came with a wrinkle: he will remain the head coach of Florida International University. Now, as Art Garcia of NBA.com reports, the league has said it will look into the move to make sure it’s legal:
“We are reviewing the agreement, in consultation with the Knicks, for compliance with league rules,” league spokesman Tim Frank said via email.
NBA teams hiring college coaches could open doors the league and the NCAA don’t want open. Let’s say the Lakers wanted to bring on Mike Krzyzewski as a consultant. What would that mean for the Lakers’ knowledge of current Duke players? Would it help “recruit” former players in free agency?
Something tells this deal doesn’t hold.
Letting Thomas work both the NCAA and NBA would set too many iffy precedents. Based on Garcia’s report, I’d say he can have either the FIU job or the New York gig, but not both.