NEW YORK, July 14, 2017 – James L. Dolan, executive chairman of The Madison Square Garden Company, announced today that Steve Mills has been named president of the New York Knickerbockers. Mr. Mills announced that Scott Perry has been named the team’s general manager.
“Today marks a culture change for our organization where we reestablish the pride, work ethic and responsibility that comes with playing for the Knicks and representing New York,” Mr. Dolan said. “I’m confident that Steve is the right person to take on this role, and ensure that we return to one of the elite teams of the NBA. He’s got an ambitious plan that centers on building a young team focused on player development, communication and teamwork.
“His decision to bring Scott on as general manager is a critical first step in transforming this franchise. Scott brings tremendous skill and experience in helping to build winning basketball teams. He’ll immediately get to work adjusting our basketball operations department to make sure we have one of the most effective front office staffs in the NBA,” Dolan added. “As Steve and Scott move forward, I will continue to not be involved in the operations of the team.”
Mills, Perry and Head Coach Jeff Hornacek will be available to discuss the team’s strategy moving forward on Monday, July 17 at 2:00 p.m. at MSG Training Center.
At Princeton University, Mills helped lead the Tigers to two Ivy League first-place finishes, including the league title and an NCAA berth in 1981 playing for Hall of Fame Head Coach Pete Carril. He then went onto a 30-plus year career in professional basketball, including 16 years at the NBA, where he rose to become senior vice president of basketball and player development. Originally joining MSG in 1999 as executive vice president of franchise operations, Mills was elevated to the position of president of MSG Sports in 2001. He had a wide range of responsibilities over his 10 years with The Madison Square Garden Company, including oversight of all basketball and business operations for the Knicks and WNBA’s Liberty, as well as all other sports-related activities at The Garden. The Long Island-native returned to the Knicks as president and general manager at the start of the 2013-14 season, and has served as general manager for the past three and a half seasons.
“I want to thank Jim for having the confidence in me to lead this team at such a critical time. I want to welcome Scott to the Knicks, and I know his skills and experience will help guide our team to future success,” Mills said. “Today is a new day for this franchise. Scott will immediately begin to put together a basketball operations department that is among the best in the league. We will all be united in implementing our strategy, which is to build our team by developing young players, emphasizing athleticism, length and defense. We have several rising young stars in the organization and we expect to add more young talent to this core. Our message to our fans is clear: we will be disciplined in sticking to this strategy, hold our players and staff accountable to the high standards that we have set for ourselves, and deliver results.”
Perry has been with NBA teams for the past 17 seasons, most recently as the executive vice president of basketball operations for the Sacramento Kings. Prior to the Kings, Perry was the Orlando Magic’s vice president & assistant general manager, where he was responsible for the day-to-day operations of the basketball operations department, player personnel matters and roster management and development. He spent parts of 12 seasons with the Detroit Pistons as vice president of basketball operations, director of player personnel and a collegiate scout. During his tenure, the Pistons reached the Eastern Conference Finals six straight times, made consecutive appearances in the NBA Finals and won the NBA Title in 2004. He also served as the Seattle SuperSonics assistant general manager in the 2007-08 season, during which the franchise drafted Kevin Durant. Perry spent three seasons as head basketball coach at Eastern Kentucky University and nine years as an assistant coach at the University of Michigan, UC Berkeley and Detroit Mercy. He graduated from Wayne State University in 1986 with a bachelor’s degree in marketing and was a member of the Warriors’ basketball team for two seasons after transferring from the University of Oregon.
“It is an honor to be joining Steve, Jeff and the New York Knicks as we begin a new chapter for this beloved franchise. I am excited for the opportunity and the responsibility bestowed upon me,” Perry said. “As general manager, I will work tirelessly to develop a culture that demands results, commitment and pride from everyone fortunate enough to be associated with our team - from our staff to our players. Nothing comes close to Madison Square Garden for basketball and it is our right and responsibility to showcase that tradition of excellence, day and night. I can’t wait to get started.”