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David Griffin only had interest in Knicks’ president job in 2017 if reporting directly to James Dolan

Knicks, David Griffin

David Griffin had interest in becoming president of basketball operations for the New York Knicks in 2017, but only if he had to report directly to owner James Dolan, according to Ramona Shelburne of ESPN.

Once Griffin realized he wasn’t going to have full autonomy and would instead be working with and likely reporting to Steve Mills, the former Cleveland Cavaliers architect lost interest in the Knicks job.

The Knicks initially turned to former Cleveland Cavaliers general manager David Griffin, who’d recently won an NBA title while managing several toxic relationships. Griffin told the Knicks that he was interested only in becoming president of basketball operations and reporting directly to ownership. Dolan sent word that he was “excited” about that prospect, according to sources close to the negotiation.

But the deal fell apart, sources said, when Griffin realized he wasn’t going to have full autonomy and would instead be working with and likely reporting to Mills.

Griffin, after parting ways with the Cavs, worked in the media before taking the president’s role with the New Orleans Pelicans. The Knicks hired Scott Perry as general manager and kept Mills as president once Griffin withdrew his name from consideration.

The Knicks could be in an entirely different situation right now had they given Griffin full power. Who knows if Kyrie Irving and Kevin Durant decide to sign with New York if Griffin is working in The Big Apple. Griffin and Irving have a previous relationship, as they were in Cleveland together.