After months of speculation, the New York Knicks have officially hired “World Wide Wes.”
This morning, the Knicks announced the hiring of William Wesley as their next executive vice president and senior adviser.
“We are very excited to announce the hiring of William Wesley, someone that I have known for over 40 years and consider to be family,” Knicks President Leon Rose said in a statement. “He is one of the most well-connected and respected people in the basketball community and he will be a tremendous asset and resource to both myself and the New York Knicks.”
Here was the entire release:
Wesley, considered arguably the most influential person in basketball, has been a consultant in the coaching division of Creative Artists Agency for 13 years. Most importantly, World Wide Wes has developed a longtime professional and personal relationship with new Knicks president Leon Rose.
Back in February, Rose agreed to a deal with the Knicks, while Wesley was reportedly in discussions with the historic franchise.
Almost immediately, basketball fans connected the dots with John Calipari and his potential interest in joining the franchise, as the Kentucky head coach has been close friends with both Rose and Wesley for decades now.
With the Knicks looking for a head coach since December, many thought (and continue to think) it could be a potential match for Calipari to join the newest front office officials in New York.
When asked about his interest in the job opening at the time of Rose’s hiring, the Kentucky head coach first praised Rose for earning the position before ultimately shutting down rumors of his potential involvement.
“Let me say this, first of all, I haven’t talked to Leon. I don’t know if it’s done, if he’s doing it, I have no idea,” Calipari told the media this afternoon. “But let me tell you about him. I’ve known him for 25 years, dear friend. He was in a rough-and-tumble business [as an NBA agent]. Really, in that business, it was a sport too. Like, it was body-to-body contact. It is. I have never heard anyone, in 25 years, say a bad word about Leon Rose. Not one. In a rough-and-tumble sport that he’s in, he’s a gatherer, he’s a culture builder. I understand why they would do it if they do that.”
He added that he would help Rose however he could, but he would not entertain the possibility of becoming the next head coach of the Knicks.
“Because I’m so close with him, I would help him in any way I could being a resource,” Calipari said of Rose. “You want to call me about college players, my own players, I’m here. It just wouldn’t be to coach.”
With both Rose and Wesley now on staff, will Calipari reconsider?
Whether he will or not, expect the rumors either way.