Laimbeer has no timetable

Bill Laimbeer recently met with Knicks president Isiah Thomas and acknowledged Sunday that he discussed the possibility of coaching the team.

"I suppose that was part of it, yes," Laimbeer said. "We talked about his basketball team, about its structure and what his vision is.

"We had a good conversation [Saturday] night. It's always fun to sit down and talk basketball with him and he's a very smart guy," he said.

Laimbeer, the former Pistons center who now coaches the WNBA's Detroit Shock, was not more specific, but he said there was no timetable for his next move.

In April, Thomas called interim coach Herb Williams the "front-runner" to be the head coach when training camp opens in October. Thomas also met with Phil Jackson that month and has interviewed other candidates.

However, Thomas, citing a possible lockout and the upcoming draft, told The New York Times on Thursday that he didn't foresee making a coaching move in the near future.

"I would say that we probably won't name a coach before the draft [June 28]," he told the Times. "There's no rushing to make any decision now. You don't know what labor agreement you're going to be working under. There could possibly be a lockout. So time is on our side.

"We have a whole summer to do our homework and make sure that we do what's right and what's best for the New York Knicks," he told the Times.

Laimbeer has said before that he would like to coach in the NBA someday. He and Thomas were teammates on Detroit's "Bad Boys" 1989 and 1990 NBA championship teams.

"I think he's a very smart basketball guy," Laimbeer said. "I think he's a great evaluator of talent."

The Knicks finished 33-49 last season, and coach Lenny Wilkens resigned at midseason. Williams led New York to a 16-27 finish. A nine-game losing streak that began in March ended any chance New York had of qualifying for the playoffs for a second straight year.

If Laimbeer, who coached the Shock to the WNBA title in 2003, were to take the job, he'd be the Knicks' fourth coach in two seasons. The Knicks haven't won a postseason game in four years, and it's been five since they took a playoff series.

Laimbeer could have competition for the job from both Jackson and Nate McMillan.

Although Jackson hasn't officially said no to the Knicks, he told the Times that he has made "kind of a commitment to talk first and foremost" with the Lakers.

""Until he makes up his mind, we're comfortable in waiting," Thomas told the Times. "He's worth the wait. And he has a lot of things on his plate and a lot of things that he's trying to consider. And we'll see where it goes."

Thomas told the Times the Knicks' chances of landing Jackson are "50-50."

McMillan is another possibility and has hinted he is interested, although the Sonics won't allow him to speak with other teams until his contract expires on June 30.