David Griffin removes name from Knicks' search

Cleveland Cavaliers general manager David Griffin speaks at a news conference before an NBA basketball game between the Chicago Bulls and the Cleveland Cavaliers Thursday Feb. 18 2016 in Cleveland

ESPN's Adrian Wojnarowski and Ramona Shelburne reported Saturday that the New York Knicks are progressing toward contract talks with David Griffin.

However, that is about to change drastically with Ian Begley of ESPN reporting that the Knicks are nearing a deal to make Griffin their next president of basketball operations.

Two days after reportedly meeting with Knicks leadership to discuss joining the team's front office, David Griffin has pulled his name out of contention. He also worked in the Suns' front office.

The belief that Houston is in line to take over as general manager is a long-standing rumor and if this latest report is accurate, it would seem to lend some validity to that. No formal contract offer was made.

Griffin, whose Cleveland contract was not renewed, helped lead the Cavaliers to the NBA Finals three years in a row, with a championship victory in 2016.

Griffin traveled to NY on Friday for a dinner meeting with Knicks executive Steve Mills and is expected to meet with owner James Dolan in the near future, according to the report.

Griffin was instrumental in turning the Cleveland Cavaliers into a powerhouse squad in the Eastern Conference.

In the wake of Phil Jackson's departure as president of basketball operations, Mills is expected to move into the president's title - with Griffin, if he becomes GM, taking over the primary responsibilities of running basketball operations, league sources said. The team said it was a mutual decision. In his three seasons as general manager, he worked out a trade that brought Kevin Love to Cleveland and added veteran support for LeBron James and Kyrie Irving.