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Knicks to hire Maurice Cheeks as assistant coach on Tom Thibodeau's staff: Report

Cheeks moved off his full-time assistant role with the Bulls earlier this offseason

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The New York Knicks are planning to hire Bulls assistant coach Maurice Cheeks, NBC Sports Chicago's K.C. Johnson confirmed Thursday. ESPN's Adrian Wojnarowski was the first to report the news.

Cheeks initially decided to move off his full-time role on the Bulls' bench under Billy Donovan. He went to Donovan after the season to ask him about taking a lesser/advisory role within the organization.

Cheeks planned to stay with the Bulls, but the compelling opportunity to coach in New York prevailed on a personal and professional level, sources confirmed to Johnson. Cheeks has family in the New York area and the Knicks made him a strong offer.

The Bulls bench has gone through some turnover this offseason. Like Cheeks, Josh Longstaff left the organization earlier this offseason. The Bulls also dismissed assistant Chris Fleming.

But, the team has already started replacing their seats. John Bryant is expected to move from the back to the front of the bench. The Bulls also hired Wes Unseld Jr. and Dan Craig as assistant coaches.

Cheeks, 67, is a Chicago native who has been with the Bulls since 2020. He's been an NBA coach since 1993. He's also been a part of Donovan's staff since their shared Thunder days in 2015, before Cheeks' head coaching stints with the 76ers and the Pistons.

Cheeks and Thibodeau have never teamed up before with the latter as a head coach. But they were both assistants in Philadelphia with the 76ers between 1994-96. Cheeks was there until 2001.

The Knicks offer a strong coaching opportunity for Cheeks, as the team finished second place in the Eastern Conference during the regular season last year. They lost in the Eastern Conference Semifinals to the Pacers.

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