Wednesday, June 28, 2017

Your moment of Zen

... in which the Zen Master himself, Phil Jackson, and the New York Knicks, finally end what has been a dumpster fire of a marriage.

Phil will take his triangle and go home today, and all of New York (or at least that part of New York that still thinks about the Knicks occasionally) will say "Finally." That Jackson's heart wasn't in the job, or he just wasn't up to it, has been obvious for a long time to a lot of people. At last even the Knicks' dopey owner, James Dolan, realized this was a toxic situation largely of Jackson's making, and it wasn't going to get any better until he was gone.

It's not like Dolan will have to search very hard for an upgrade. The Knicks finished 20 games under .500 this season and missed the playoffs for the fourth straight year. They were 80-166 in Jackson's tenure as team president.

That means the Knicks averaged not quite 27 wins a season in his three full years. And those were only the numbers. They don't take into account the way he alienated both the club's marquee player, Carmelo Anthony, and its future marquee player, Kristaps Porzingis.

The latter was likely the tipping point for Dolan, who couldn't have been happy that Jackson managed to get crosswise with Porzingis, the 7-foot-3 21-year-old whose seemingly limitless ceiling made him the perfect piece to rebuild the franchise around.  You can mess with the present if you're in Jackson's shoes, but you can't mess with the future. Yet that's exactly what he did.

Which makes more than a few people wonder if Phil deliberately did it because he was looking for an escape hatch. If that's the case, it worked.

So maybe you give Phil the "W" here. I'm sure he'd appreciate it.

It's not like he's seen a lot of  'em lately.

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