Blog Entry

Jackson's decision has far-reaching implications

Posted on: June 23, 2010 5:03 pm
The big news about 30 hours before the NBA draft didn’t involve John Wall, Evan Turner or DeMarcus Cousins. It revolved around a 64-year-old coach with artificial hips and a finger on the pulse on the coaching and free agency landscape – a fellow named Phil Jackson.

One of the biggest dominoes of the offseason didn’t exactly tumble Wednesday, but it’s teetering – toward retirement.

“I’m leaning towards retiring but I have not made up my mind,” Jackson told reporters as the back-to-back champion Lakers conducted their season-ending exit interviews.

Big news. Or is it? The Zen Master carefully worded the most definitive statement yet about his future, leaving the door open to returning for a chance at a three-peat. Given that Jackson conceded during the NBA Finals that he’s been told a significant pay cut would be required if he returned to the Lakers next season, this could be Phil’s way of forcing Dr. Jerry Buss’ hand.

It also could be a graceful way for the 11-time champion to exit stage left, turning the reins over to former Laker Byron Scott – whose candidacy for the Cavs’ coaching job is officially on hold while Jackson makes his final decision.

Scott is serious about the Cleveland job, and the Cavs are serious about him. But everyone involved understands that Scott’s dream job is coaching the Lakers. While Kobe Bryant has been adamant that he wants Jackson back, he’d be amenable to Scott taking over if that’s the way it had to be.

In some ways, it would be the perfect way for Scott to validate his coaching resume – taking over a team that is loaded with talent and poised to win at least one more championship while Bryant is still in his prime. One of the knocks on Scott is that he wears out his welcome in the locker room after two or three years, and that’s about all this Lakers dynasty has left, anyway.

Jackson has said there’s a 90 percent chance that he’s either coaching the Lakers next season or not coaching at all. Depending on your skill level with mathematics, that means there’s a 10 percent chance he’s coaching somewhere else. To that point, the Clippers and even the Cavs will continue to hold out hope that they could lure Jackson. Both presumably would offer a multi-year deal, whereas Jackson’s tenure with the Lakers has been made up of a series of one-year deals in recent years. But it’s difficult to believe that Buss would stand idly by and watch Jackson jilt Bryant for LeBron James. Could you ever imagine Jackson doing that to Michael Jordan in his prime? Also, at this point Jackson has earned the right to be taken at his word that health and the grind of the NBA season – 114 games for the Lakers this past season from preseason to Game 7 of the Finals – are the only factors he’s considering.

So we wait for Phil to make his next move, which will affect a lot of other moves across the basketball landscape.

Since: Feb 12, 2007
Posted on: June 25, 2010 2:34 am

Jackson's decision has far-reaching implications

Great points, rdnytheman1.  I stand corrected.

Since: Aug 30, 2006
Posted on: June 25, 2010 2:12 am

Jackson's decision has far-reaching implications

I agree with you 100% Jackson is a very good coach when your players and superstars like playing for you then they trust you know what your doing. Phil is not great at making adjustments but sometimes he's stubborn in his approach to coaching. His system is set up for you to win no matter what in his eyes it's up to the players to play the game the right way. That is why he does what he does in order to understand Phil you have to understand the way he thinks. I like that in a coach...also in 2004 when we lost to Detroit three things were obvious. 1. Kobe wasn't Kobe because of the alleged rape case. 2 Shaq was never in shape and never played himself into game shap. 3. Karl Malone getting hurt killed us though in the end without KM Detroirit did what scaramento should have done attached the PF position because that is where we were weak. Had the Lakers Kept Robert Horry for back up Malone purposes we would have beatin Detrorit. But we didn't and we lost.

Also when Phil came back after the one year hiatus the Lakers were still in the rebuilding stage and the trade for Gasol put us in the championship final piece mood. Plus it helped when Kobe blasted the team and pissed everyone off, they all had a f Kobe mood when he stayed and played their best basketball mindset wise. But gettin Gasol was the key he made us so deep and tall at the front line that we started puttin hands on teams. Except Boston but every championship team has their stepping stone before they can take the big step.

Now it's up to Mitch to not f the team up and find a way to keep talent around the core. But for now I'm going to enjoy our Championship Purple and Gold fo life!

Rodn the Man has spoken...

Since: Jan 18, 2007
Posted on: June 24, 2010 8:50 pm

Jackson's decision has far-reaching implications

Black Mamba for the win! 

"I dont know what your job is but what if someone said that they might consider you a great worker if you had the guts to sweep floors at Mickey D's instead of going to college!"^Best line I've ever heard in regards to Jackson.  11 titles and 2 near-misses.   The fact this discussion still exists is a joke.

Since: Mar 8, 2009
Posted on: June 24, 2010 1:27 pm

Jackson's decision has far-reaching implications

11 championships! The haters on here dont seem to process that, likely bc you have had no success in anything you personally have ever done. You dont look at who has played for you after 11, you say he is a great coach. You can debate that he is not the best ever, that is fine, but you cant say he is a bad coach! The Lakers were nowhere when he arrived in LA, they were a classic huge potential no result team. He changed that in his first year!

Since: Aug 20, 2008
Posted on: June 24, 2010 1:18 pm

Jackson's decision has far-reaching implications

I like the point about him not building his own teams while going to a team that was getting close to being the best.

That being said, he still had to coach them to win and with all the egos on those teams, he more than likely earned the money and championships he has.

Since: May 28, 2008
Posted on: June 24, 2010 12:13 pm

Jackson's decision has far-reaching implications

Ok stop it with this Phil Jackson is not a good coach nonsense! Chevy know what your talking about before you comment. Phil did not leave because Michael Jordan left. Jerry Krause did not renew Phil Jackson's contract because they were having a dispute and that caused MJ to leave the Bulls and everyone else followed(Pippen, Rodman, Kukoc, Kerr). Next you say that Chicago was poised to win a championship when Phil Jackson arrived??? Phil Jackson was an assistant coach on the team that was coached by Doug Collins. They Bulls had been bullied by the Pistons for 3 years straight losing in the Eastern Conferednce semi's and the Eastern Conference Finals 2 straight years. They fire Collins and promoted Phil Jackson. The next season they win a franchise record 61 games, sweep the Pistons in the Conference Finals, and beat my Lakers in the NBA Finals. So we lose with me as an assistant but when I take over as head coach and impliment the triangle offense we win the NBA title but I can't coach!  Now lets look at my LA Lakers!! You say that the Lakers were poised to win some championshps at the time Phil arrived. Again know what your talking about before you comment. Del Harris was a coach just like Mike Brown of the Cavs. He coached the Lakers for 4 1/2 seasons and his lowest win total was 48 wins.  But he couldnt adjust to defend the Pick and Roll. Utah pick and rolled the Lakers out the playoffs 2 years straight! Del Harris was fired in the strike season of 98-99. Kurt Ramis led the Lakers into the playoffs and they were swept by the Spurs. Teams poised to win championships dont get swept, they push the team that beats them to at least 7 games. They hire Phil Jackson and he brings over the triangle offense and wins 3 NBA titles. You get mad at Phil Jackson for not taking a rebuilding project. No one talks about Greg Popavich. He didnt rebuild the Spurs. He was the GM of the team that went 20-62 after David Robinson and Shaun Elliot were supposedly injured. Everyone knows they threw the season to get Tim Duncan. Bob Hill had coached the Spurs to a record of 59-23 the season before. So Pop didnt rebuild the Spurs but no one says that he is not a good coach. You dont win 11 titles without being a great coach. I dont know what your job is but what if someone said that they might consider you a great worker if you had the guts to sweep floors at Mickey D's instead of going to college!

Since: Jan 14, 2009
Posted on: June 24, 2010 10:33 am

Not a Good Coach

I agree 100% with the guys on here saying he is not a good coach.  Just like Bill Bellichek is a bad coach becuase he has Tom Brady, Pat Riley is a bad coach becuase he had Magic, Red Aurbach is a bad coach becuas ehe had Russell, Scotty Bowmen is a bad coach becuase he Lemiux and Yzerman, Bill Walsh becuase he had Rice/Montana, Lombardi becuase he had Bartt Star, Joe Torre becuas ehe had Jeter, Bobby Cox becuase he had Maddux/Smoltz/Glavine.

Shall I go on?  Don't be dumbazzes

Since: Jan 9, 2009
Posted on: June 24, 2010 1:01 am

Jackson's decision has far-reaching implications

Seven finals in 10 years.  You're a Laker fan?  Scoreboard douchebag.

Since: Feb 12, 2007
Posted on: June 23, 2010 11:31 pm

Jackson's decision has far-reaching implications

I'm a Lakers fan, but have never really been a Phil Jackson fan.  I'm not in the locker room, but I'm not convinced that he's that great of a coach.  Sometimes he doesn't make any adjustments, just telling them to "play through it."  Yeah, he's coached good teams through those championships, but what about the winnable ones where they *didn't* win (2004, 2008)?  On a team with top-notch caliber, it's the coach who can make the team play up to (or even surpass) its potential.

Since: May 11, 2007
Posted on: June 23, 2010 10:27 pm

Jackson's decision has far-reaching implications

Astonishing career? Lets see, Chicago was poised to win championships when ol` philly jackson arrived, and promptly left when Mr Jordan did. Turned down offers from other NBA teams... too much hard work building his own team. Then came the LA job... Well looky here another team poised on making a run at some more championships. I might consider him a great coach, if he ever had the guts to build a team, but looking at the teams he coached...I think curious George would have had the same results...

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