June 28, 2017

Phil Jackson, the Triangle and good-bye to all that

The Chris Paul trade, looked at here by me, was just one of two fun kick-offs to the NBA offseason.

The other?

Mr. Zen Triangle, Phil Jackson, agreed to let Knicks owner James Dolan kick his ass out the door for about $20 million in unpaid contract money.

First, per Deadspin, it's arguable that Phil was kind of BSing about the triangle all along. He had a largely centerless offense with the Bulls, after all. And, the Diesel was not a good passer, but yes, a great shoulder dropper. Only in his second Lakers run did he have, in Pau Gasol, a center who could actually be a triangle-type post player.

Otherwise, one would have to be a semi-idiot not to win titles with peak MJ and peak Kobe.

But, the times had passed Phil by. Zones have negated back-to-basket centers. Tighter foul calls would also affect Shaq today, too.

Red Satan, in reflecting on Phil's bye-bye, has a multiple-choice question.

Per it, I don't think it was a totally bad deal to hire Phil at the time. (It would have been better if he'd been given an assistant who knew the salary cap and who could force Phil to understand it.) I do think it was the right thing to get rid of him now. And, it might have been smart to get rid of him before now.

Melo: A deal too far
Resigning Carmelo Anthony was bad enough. Giving him a new contract with a full no-trade was dumber yet. (The only thing dumber than THIS will be LeBron brainwashing David Griffin's replacement into trading for Melo.)

That said, Phil had some other semi-brainless ideas. Ball Don't Lie lists the top six. That's No. 1. Hiring Derek Fisher is No. 2. Trading for Derrick Rose is No. 3, and I'd buy all of that.

Trying to trade the
Unicorn? Last straw.
But Kristaps Porzingis, the Unicorn? Trying to trade him? That was the last straw. The last straw plus one was Jackson's alleged determination to teach him a lesson after he didn't meet with Phil for the traditional post-season checkout. Phil remained stubborn and clueless both. And, I think he kind of enjoyed that, and playing to his own Knicks player days.

It is funny for Jeff Hornacek to remain non-committal through all of this. I expect him to have the upcoming season "free" but, if he can't do better, he's gone, too.

And, a silver lining for Knicks fans. David Griffin is available. And, I think that if he stomached Dan Gilbert and low pay, he can deal with James Dolan.

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