Rumors of Phil Jackson joining the New York Knicks reached an apex on Tuesday, when a source said that the legendary coach has reached an "agreement in principle" to oversee squad's basketball operations as president.
The New York Post reported that Jackson gave the Knicks
a verbal commitment Saturday, despite that the team has not many an official announcement.
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Jackson is a former Knicks standout who won two league titles, as well as Hall of Fame-worthy acclaim as a coach guiding the Chicago Bulls and Los Angeles Lakers to multiple NBA championships.
If the rumor is true, the signing would create an interesting dynamic; Jackson lives in Marina Del Rey, Calif. with his fiancée, Lakers President Jeanie Buss. A longtime Lakers executive, she became president of the Lakers last year when her father, Jerry Buss, died.
The New York Post reported that its source says that the current Knicks President/General Manager Steve Mills will stay on as an executive but will take on a new role.
Bleacher Report speculated that Jackson could be using the Knicks
as leverage for other jobs he may be interested in.
"Jackson went on to admit (in a USA Today article that) he's an unofficial consultant for Detroit Pistons' owner Tom Gores," Bleacher report reported. "Incidentally, the Pistons could use another face in the front office with current general manager Joe Dumars having poured large sums of money into a fatally flawed roster. Options aren't limited to Detroit, either.
"There's no telling which or how many teams Jackson has been in contact with. The Knicks could be one of the few or only organizations promising to act on his availability now. His mere involvement could be a matter of circumstance," the website continued.
NBA Hall of Famer Charles Barkley told TMZ Sports on Tuesday that the Knicks
should be focusing their attention on hiring good players.
"Is he gonna play?" Barkley said. "I love Phil Jackson but they need players. They need to worry about players."
Jackson was a member of the Knicks' 1970 and 1973 championship teams. He appeared in 732 games over the course of 11 seasons.
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