Q&A: Tom Thibodeau

Courtesy of New York Post

Q: You’ll probably laugh at this: How do you feel about the fact that Knicks fans are viewing you as the savior?

A: (Laugh) It’s an honor and a privilege to be able there. … I don’t fool myself into not thinking that it’s gonna require a lot of work … just come in and give everything we have every day. Do it for each other, do it for the city, do it for the team, put the team first. … And if we keep doing the right things, the results will take care of themselves. But I think we all know what it will take to get this done, and we believe that we can make this right.

Q: What are the ideal traits of a Tom Thibodeau basketball player?

A: Smart, tough, talented and driven.

Q: What is your definition of toughness?

A: I think you categorize it into two different categories. The physical toughness is the obvious — the ability to push through things no matter what’s coming at you, to keep going, to not give in. Never surrender. Usually the victory goes to the guy who can play through it the longest. Of course, the mental part is equally important. Maybe more so than the physical. No matter what, to do what’s best for the group, even if it may not be best for you, but to put the team first, that’s the critical part of that.

Q: What do you want the on-court personality of your Knicks team to be?

A: I want us to be hard-playing. I want us to be tough, smart, give everything that we have. And I think that resonates with New York City. I think when you look at the city, they appreciate great work, they have knowledgeable fans, they’re gonna appreciate great-effort plays, they’re gonna appreciate a team that plays together and plays for each other and will know that. We want to be a team that’s not afraid to get their hands dirty. I think that’s what this city appreciates, and we’re gonna try to bring that every night.

Q: Describe your leadership style.

A: Hard to describe, I think, for me. That would be probably for others. But I’d like to think that the things that are important for me with leadership: Obviously you want to expertise in whatever it is that you’re doing, and then to not be afraid to have courage, and then to also have humility. And to be honest … build trust with honesty.

Q: Who are leaders do you admire outside the realm of sports?

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