Heckingbottom is currently in charge at Barnsley, but he was linked with the vacancy at Sunderland almost immediately after Simon Grayson was sacked.
Heckingbottom used to play for Sunderland and, given his success at Barnsley, he was an understandable target for the Black Cats.
“Yes, undoubtedly so,” he said, when asked if the Barnsley job still satisfies him.
“Over the years, whether I was a kid, a player, a coach, or working with the first team, there’s been umpteen opportunities to go elsewhere, but I’ve always chosen to stay here, and that’s been down to me at the time.
“Everybody knows what I think of the place. As a team, we carry on. We have to take it (the interest) as a positive because it shows we are doing something right and that’s how I look at it.
“Other than being asked about it now, it’s not even in my head so that’s as far as it goes.”
Of course, managers have previously batted away reported interest only to go back on their words.
However, Heckingbottom hardly sounds like a manager who is desperate to move to the Stadium of Light.
And few could blame him if he did turn down the job at Sunderland, if it was offered to him.
While Sunderland do have greater potential than Barnsley, the Black Cats are in a mess at this moment in time.
Sunderland are sat rock bottom of the Championship table and, given their lack of success in recent times, they may be hard pressed to convince Heckingbottom to move from his secure position at Barnsley.