Blog Entry

Jackson says coaching Knicks would be 'special'

Posted on: January 23, 2012 10:06 am
Edited on: January 23, 2012 10:09 am
Phil Jackson says he's not interested in coaching again, but New York is "special" (Getty Images)
By Matt Moore

For starters, Phil Jackson told the New York Times he's not interested in coaching right now. Let's get that out there, first and foremost. See, I'll even blockquote it, from the New York Times
“I have no desire to coach,” he said. “You never say never, right? I mean, there’s always something that might change my mind — but I just don’t see it.
So Jackson is not "considering," "exploring," "rumored to be interested in," or in contact with the Knicks. He's hanging out in Montana and L.A., being Phil Jackson, and probably being pretty happy with the fact that when he baggage checks his championship jewelry, he has to pay the extra weight fees. 

However, the very next quote in that article is what makes you stop and go "hmmm" much as Arsenio Hall did in the early 1990's.
“Without a doubt, New York is special,” he continued in a vein a little more encouraging for Knicks fans. “Why wouldn’t it be? When I was there, it was one of the greatest times to be in New York. I mean, the Mets, Jets and Knicks won championships all in one year.”
via Phil Jackson Is Seduced by the Energy of New York -

Jackson, of course, won his first NBA championship as a player with the Knicks in the 1970's. A former teammate from his time there, Walt Frazier, is the color commentator. Bill Bradley, another teammate, lives there. He has history there.

Mike D'Antoni is in the last year of his contract. The Knicks are stuck in neutral, and D'Antoni's high-flying system is ill-suited to focusing around a shoot-first, shoot-last, shoot-always small forward in Carmelo Anthony and without a legit point guard, Amar'e Stoudemire has none of his strengths being maximized. The Knicks are a better defensive team this year, but the offense is so dreadful that finger-pointing has begun. As far back as three years ago, when Jackson was still winning titles with L.A., there was talk of Jackson returning to finish off his coaching run where it began, at Madison Square Garden.

The fact that the current Knicks roster is so amazingly optimized for the Triangle offense Jackson has always run (and been the only coach to be successful with it in the NBA) should not be overlooked. With Tyson Chandler in the low block, Amar'e Stoudemire in the high post, and Anthony on ther perimeter, it would allow Anthony to improvise, shoot and create, while not forcing him into running the entire offense, as the Triangle delineates decisions down to a set of options versus a free-flowing system. The Knicks lack of real guard help, even with the return of Baron Davis, would be acceptable as they would rotate weak side available for kick-outs as shooters on kick-and-drives to the basket from the far side.

The coach back where it started. A team in need of his talents. The similarities between Kobe Bryant and Carmelo Anthony, their friendship, even. One last run to finish his illustrious career where it began. It's too perfect. Which is why it probably will not happen. And yet, even as Jackson says he doesn't miss it... he kind of does.  Again, from the Times: 
“I don’t miss it. I really don’t miss it. But I think I have to stick my finger into an electric socket every once in a while just to get a little jolt out of life to keep it going because that’s what gave me the joys, the jollies of life.”
So, no, Phil Jackson will not be coaching the Knicks. Probably. Most-likely. 


But if he did ...

Since: Dec 22, 2011
Posted on: January 23, 2012 4:17 pm

Jackson says coaching Knicks would be 'special'

Jackson won't take on a team that is in need of a lot of help. He doesn't want to ruin his legacy. You rode out into the Sunset Phil, Dont turn around. Unless maybe its for the Miami Heat!

Since: Sep 24, 2006
Posted on: January 23, 2012 3:32 pm

Jackson says coaching Knicks would be 'special'

Phil Jackson has no interest in coaching any team (the Knicks included) unless they have a superstar on the roster.  Sorry, Knick fans but neither Anthony or Stoudemire are superstar players.  And even Howard would not sway him because Howard does not possess the ball enough to impact the outcome of the game.  Not to mention his failing free throw percentage.  Jackson too erudite to get involved with a losing proposition.

Since: Dec 17, 2009
Posted on: January 23, 2012 2:50 pm

Jackson says coaching Knicks would be 'special'

Believe me, P.Jackson is not coaching the Knicks unless they get D.Howard to go along with Melo. He goes to teams that have talented enough players to win Championships and he brings out that talent. I am not knocking the guy but lets be honest, P.Jackson inherited teams with M.Jordan, S.Pippen, K.Bryant, Shaq already in place.........tells me that he is not taking over a team that is a mess. He will not come out of retirement to get his butt kicked. Why would he?

Since: Sep 15, 2006
Posted on: January 23, 2012 2:04 pm

Jackson's beat up body won't allow it

Phil Jackson won't return to coaching, not because he lacks the desire to do it, but because his body is so beat up that he can't take the rigors of it.  After spending a career being beat up by the big men of his era, Jackson has spent the last 20 years squishing into airline seats and sleeping in hotel beds constructed for people much smaller than Jackson's massive frame.  He walks with a distinct hunch in his posture and a noticable limp to his gait.  Every time he takes a seat, he looks like he is suffering from the effort it took to lower himself.  82 games in the NBA is a grind, both mentally and physically.  No matter how much Jackson loves the game, or loves New York, he won't be returning because his body won't allow it. 

Since: Mar 5, 2010
Posted on: January 23, 2012 12:53 pm

Jackson says coaching Knicks would be 'special'

I think that it's safe to say that it's easier to coach selfish groups consisting of guys like MJ, Pippen, Rodman, Kobe, Shaq, Rice, Pau then it is to coach teams with guys that get along, but the best players are Eddie Jones, Joe Johnson, Chris Mullin, Kevin Love, etc. Phil Jackson would never coach one of those types of teams and that's why he won't jump on the Knicks offer until he sees more talent on their roster.

Since: Oct 5, 2006
Posted on: January 23, 2012 12:52 pm

Jackson says coaching Knicks would be 'special'

Not sure what is up with the media and why they want to continue to hate on Melo.  Yes, I realize that since Melo has joined NY, Knicks haven't reached expectations and Nuggets have exceeded....but Melo has little to do with either.  Nuggets succeeded cause they got a ton in return for Melo and always played a system that works; even with the new parts.  Karl is no fool...he'd taken Melo back in a minute...but he can also make it work with the great pieces he got from NY.  He also doesn't have Martin or JR Smith...and they aren't skipping a beat.  The reason NY is losing is cause they have no system in place...except offense...and they are not exceptional at that either.  They are not the Suns or the Mavs and that is the only place D'Antoni's system ever worked...AND it never worked in the playoffs....  So to say it isn't D' to be an idiot.

Wanna look at players:  Amare is avg 18/8 and shooting 41% AS A FREAKIN PF.  What????  His efficiency is 15.5
Melo is avg 26/7/4 and shooting only 40% as a guard combo.  His efficiency is 20.7

Melo is leading his team in points and assists.

Now, both of these guys are not shooting a very high percentage.  In fact, both are shooting their poorest percentage in their careers.  Amare by a ton.  Why is that?  Cause the coaching...isn't finding the way to get these two to gel.  Heck, half the time they aren't even on the court together.

Amare..stop taking threes...and outside jumpers.  Play the paint like most PF-C.  That is where you are needed.

Melo is not a PG; D'Antoni needs to find an alternative then asking Melo to run the team and play Guard-Forward combo.  That doesn't work and it takes Melo from what he does best; which is guard/combo play off the ball.

Too many bad shots are taken and many of those come from late seconds shots due to absolutely ZERO discipline on the offensive end from all players.  They have two PGs and they have a shoot-first mentality.  How does that help your two stars in Melo and Amare?  Whenever your Forward leads in assists, you know you've got issues.  And no Davis won't save the Knicks....we'll be lucky he gets on the court and then it will be a miracle if he is effective.  Another dumb Knicks signing.

You want Knicks to be special...  Fire D'Antoni and bring back JVG.  Then you have a team with a defense mentality and JVG although not an offensive mind; can make something outta that team.  He likely will bring in a team that has that offensive mind to help him out.

The Knicks have the talent to win their division; esp with Cs slumping.   Yet, D'Antoni has gotten nothing and created nothing with this team.  He's had enough time...esp with the lockout to figure out a solution.  He doesn't have one.  Time for him to go.

Since: Aug 25, 2006
Posted on: January 23, 2012 12:29 pm

Jackson says coaching Knicks would be 'special'

When coaching you will always have a difficult task ahead.  If your team is young, you need to teach how to compete.  When your team is a second tier team and is supposed to win some but not winning all, you need to teach them how to win it all.  And, if you have a superstars team, you need to teach how to trust each other, how to share, and how to be consistent without being jealously or looking for recognition.  There is always a bing task to fill.  Phil was a genius controlling superstars and making them to share and play with unity and championship mindset.  He made the best players to trust everyone and give role players the importance that they have to be a championship contender.  He cant' be critized because he had Jordan, Bryant, Shaq, Pip, brothers and sisters, that was a difficult group to coach for all their egos and selfishness...

Since: Mar 5, 2010
Posted on: January 23, 2012 11:49 am

Jackson says coaching Knicks would be 'special'

It is well said because that is exactly what Phil Jackson is waiting for. If he and Pat Riley could mend fences, Phil would be looking to coach the Heat.

Since: Aug 24, 2011
Posted on: January 23, 2012 11:40 am

Jackson says coaching Knicks would be 'special'

Umm... not well said.  No one wins without talent.  No one.  Wooden had the best players ever.  Is he overated?

Since: Mar 5, 2010
Posted on: January 23, 2012 11:06 am

Jackson says coaching Knicks would be 'special'

Well said PATSSOX.

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