NKT goes to great lengths to proclaim it is not a form of Tibetan Buddhism (or any other form of Buddhism today). NKT views Tibetan Buddhism is degenerate, largely because of the role of the Dalai Lamas for hundreds of years to harmonize the various forms of Buddhism in Tibet. NKT shuns harmony.
NKT, possibly seeking some connection with the past, however, has named itself the 'New Kadampa Tradition', a name applied to no other form or tradition of Buddhism. The 'New Kadampa Tradition' (NKT) is, in effect, a proprietary brand name for a novel religion that selects some but not all precepts of Atisha and Tsongkhapa (certainly, neither Atisha or Tsongkhapa worshiped NKT's Shugden god or would endorse NKT's worldwide protests against the Dalai Lama, other Buddhist leaders, NKT's ex students and clergy, and others.
Kadampa and New Kadampa Buddhism refer to the the Tibetan Buddhist schools of Atisha (980-1054) and Tsongkhapa (1357–1419), respectively.
Lacking facts to support its renegade movement, NKT attempts illogic.
For example, NKT claims...
"New Kadampa Tradition = Je Tsongkhapa’s Tradition"
"Je Tsongkhapa’s Tradition = Gelug Tradition (“Virtuous Tradition”)"
(TRUE, the Gelug school of Tibetan Buddhism flowed from the students of Tsongkhapa, including the line of Dalai Lamas, leaders in the Gelug school of Tibetan Buddhism)
"A Gelugpa = A New Kadampa"
(TRUE if referring to Tsongkhapa's New Kadampa school of Tibetan Buddhism; FALSE if referring to NKT)
Nevertheless, Kelsang Gyatso, founder of NKT after breaking away from Tibetan Buddhism asserts...
“We are pure Gelugpas. The name Gelugpa doesn’t matter, but we believe we are following the pure tradition of Je Tsongkhapa. We are studying and practicing Lama Tsongkhapa’s teachings and taking as our example what the ancient Kadampa lamas and Geshes did. All the books that I have written are commentaries on Lama Tsongkhapa’s teachings. We try our best to follow the example of the ancient Kadampa Tradition, and use the name Kadampa to remind people to practice purely.”
Remarkably, Kelsang Gyatso claims “We are pure Gelugpas. The name Gelugpa doesn’t matter..." (FALSE)
Indeed, Kelsang Gyatso's books refer to Tsonkgkhapa but such reference is substantially different than practicing his teachings. Kelsang Gyatso dismisses Tsongkhapa's ordination vows, ignores most of Tsongkhapa's teachings and contradicts Tsonkhapa's teachings by way of ugly attacks on leading Buddhists and those who have found the courage to leave NKT's indoctrinations.