The team-building failure on new Knicks GM’s résumé

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The tandem of president Steve Mills and general manager Scott Perry heading the Knicks front office is expected to be kinder, gentler and friendlier.

According to sources, the duo will be a lot more available to the media. While Phil Jackson set his own media policy, which especially last season was to avoid the local press, Mills and Perry will be front and center, starting Monday at their joint press conference.

As much as Perry is hailed for his congenial, charismatic nature and slew of contacts, ranging from AAU and college coaches to international, he probably won’t want to talk too much about his five-year stint in Orlando.

Perry, 53, too, was second man in Orlando, under Rob Hennigan, and the duo got fired April 13. Two weeks later, Perry signed on with Sacramento to help inexperienced GM Vlade Divac and received kudos for the Kings’ successful offseason.

But what happened to Perry in Fantasyland?

“Scott is a great guy and he will be very approachable and talkative for you guys [in the media],” one NBA front-office type told The Post. “He has great contacts around the league and is tremendous relating to players.

“The question after Orlando is his judgment in putting teams together. He’s a very nice guy, a big résumé, but you can argue Orlando is coming off its worst five-year stretch in their history. So you can view the move as questionable.”

According to a source, Perry, a Detroit product who spent parts of 12 years in the Pistons front office, was much behind the questionable signings of center Bismack Biyombo to a four-year, $71 million package last summer and Jeff Green. Orlando had cleared out cap space for Biyombo, shipping Tobias Harris out for Brandon Jennings, whom they let sign with the Knicks.

Perry’s drafting of Mario Hezonja at No. 5 in 2015 and Elfrid Payton in 2014 don’t look wise at the moment, especially since the latter was traded for Philadelphia’s Rookie of the Year candidate Dario Saric.

Though the selection of Victor Oladipo was sound, Orlando’s front office traded him and Domantis Sabonis to Oklahoma City for Serge Ibaka. The Magic eventually traded Ibaka for pennies on the dollar — Terrence Ross and a late first-rounder. Perry’s Orlando staff also traded Mo Harkless to Portland for peanuts.

The good news is Perry has other successes — already credited with good work in his Sacramento cameo. Sources say he lobbied for the Kings to draft De’Aaron Fox at No. 5, and the club had an easy free agency in adding veterans point guard George Hill, Zach Randolph and Vince Carter.

According to league executives, it is somewhat of a surprise the Kings were willing to give up Perry so soon for a 2019 second-rounder and cash. Perry pushed for the Knicks job — feeling it was the most influence he yet has had. Plus, his daughter, Chelsea, is a film student at NYU.

Perry and Vlade DivacAP

Sources say in due time, Perry will be allowed to hire new personnel men if he sees fit, though he is well versed in the current Knicks staff.

“This is a great opportunity for Scott professionally,” Divac said, “and it gets him back East, closer to his daughter. I was not going to stop him. The only thing I feel bad about is that we had everything in place in our front office. Now I have to find someone who can come in and do the things Scott did for us.”

In his 12 seasons with Detroit, Perry received credit for pushing for the drafting of Tayshawn Prince. He also was on the staff that passed on Carmelo Anthony in 2003 to draft Serbian bust Darko Milicic, but that was more on Joe Dumars.

In fact, Detroit’s botch was so significant Dumars restricted his information gathering on draft prospects with Perry assigned the task. Perry is regarded as so “thorough,” one source said, he borders on “micromanaging.”

“That changed how we did our background checks,” Dumars said recently. “And Scott was a huge part of the overhaul. We felt we didn’t have enough information.”

Ironically, Perry got to know the Serbian basketball delegation so well, he eventually was hired by the Serbian Divac.

Perry’s vast relationships — directly contrary to Phil Jackson’s — are his best attribute. Whether that means Perry will rebuild the Knicks into a winner is no certainty — with Orlando looming as a cautionary Disney tale.



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