The New York Post’s Marc Berman suggests one possible reason Isiah Thomas is so eager to load up on draft picks

Knicks president Isiah Thomas talked with great enthusiasm Thursday night after the trade deadline about using his four first-round picks across the next two drafts on four young players.

But there is a possibility of using one of those first-rounders on one old coach ” namely, Hall-of-Famer Larry Brown.

The Knicks can never admit it publicly because they’d be tampering, but two league sources said Thomas knows he is now in much better position to make a deal for a head coach ” not just Brown ” who might be under contract elsewhere.

Before Thursday, the Knicks were in no position to land Brown. It’s been widely speculated that the Knicks would have to fork over their first-round pick along with cash this June if they wanted to get Brown from under his Piston contract, which runs another three years.

Problem is, the Knicks are forbidden from trading their own first-round pick under NBA rules. A team mat not deal its own first-round pick in two successive years. The Knicks shipped their 2004 first-rounder to Phoenix in the Stephon Marbury deal.

Now Isiah is well-stocked with picks that he can use to deal with Detroit or another club. When Pat Riley was freed from breaking the Knicks’ contract to join Miami in 1995, the Heat gave the Knicks a first-rounder and $1 million. The Pistons might look greedy to ask for more than the late first-rounder the Knicks acquired from San Antonio Thursday, a second-rounder and $3 million in cash.