Saturday, June 16th, 2012 at 3:41 pm  |  35 responses

Phil Jackson Had No Interest In Coaching ‘Clumsy’ Knicks

In an interview to air on HBO’s Real Sports Tuesday night, Phil Jackson denies ever having any interest in coaching the Knicks, dismissing the possibility because New York’s roster is “clumsy” (via NY Daily News): “’I wasn’t gonna take that job, that’s for sure,’ said Jackson, who won two NBA titles while playing for the Knicks from 1967 to 1978. Jackson suggested he had given a good deal of thought to coaching the Knicks — ‘New York is special,’ he says — but he dismissed the possibility of returning to Madison Square Garden because the current team is ‘clumsy.’ ‘What’s clumsy mean?’ Kremer asked. “Well, they don’t fit together well. (Amare) Stoudemire doesn’t fit well with Carmelo. Stoudemire’s a really good player. But he’s gotta play in a certain system and a way. ‘Carmelo has to be a better passer. And the ball can’t stop every time it hits his hands,’ Jackson continued. ‘They need to have someone come in that can kinda blend that group together.’ ‘But wouldn’t you have been the perfect person to come in and blend all that talent together?’ Kremer said. ‘You sort of have a good history of that.’ ‘Yeah,’ Jackson agreed. ‘Well, it never happened.’”

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  • Hart

    He’s right, but it still hurts……Being a Knick fans hurts man

  • Jake

    Look how clumsy LA looks now PJ. You could do to NY what you did to LA.

  • http://slamonline.com Datkid

    lmaooooo I’ve been telling knicks fans this for the last 2 years.

  • http://www.nba.com Redd

    Lol and now they’re all sad like they had a chance.

  • http://cnbc.com JTaylor21

    The Knicks are the perfect example for those who like to talk about how only big-market NBA teams have the chance to compete for championships. There isn’t a bigger market than NY yet the knicks have sucked for years.

  • TheRealOne

    Everywhere I go, I hear everybody say
    ‘What you gonna do to make that team play’
    From the folks across the street at 34th and 6th
    Everyone who calls says, ‘Hey man, fix the Knicks’
    Fix the Knicks and make them shine
    Get on and win like it’s ’69
    Hitting all their free throws and no more shooting bricks
    Time to get it right and fix the Knicks
    Doing my best and that’s my problem
    I check with my friend called Isiah Thomas
    Pay no mind to those nasty critics
    They haven’t done a thing to fix the Knicks
    We know we’re getting better, but still no respect
    We score a lot of points, but where’s the defense?
    Everyone’s an expert saying ‘Trade your draft picks’
    You got to get ‘this guy’ to fix the Knicks

  • l2ising Phoenix

    We will make noise this year….


    off course you will t2ising just like last year and the year before. looool poor knick fans. what am I gloating about ima raptors fan.

  • http://www.nba.com danfields

    oh the old man starts to act funny now. the knicks wanted woodson anyway.

  • Layzie

    Melo is my fav player but him & Amare haven’t worked out too well. But after D’antoni left I thought Melo, Amare, & Lin started to play pretty good together under Woodson until Lin got injured. Hopefully they can all play together better next season with no injuries.

  • robb

    cosign JTaylor

  • riggs

    amar’e shouldve never been a knick. james dolan should never be an owner.

  • http://www.slamonline.com Redd

    LOL shut up dan you’re an idiot, Woodson isn’t nearly as good as even Sloan.

  • RunNGun

    Cosign @DATKID LMFAO Read ‘em and weep, Knicks fans. Everyone knows Melo is a ball hog; wouldn’t fit in Jackson’s system. Same goes for STAT. Of course, delusions of grandeur first then reality sets in. LMFAO

  • MikeC.

    Since the Knicks’ players don’t fit the only system Jackson can run, hiring Jackson makes no sense. “Hmmmmm, we have one guy that’s a pick and roll beast, and another that loves to iso. Let’s run the Triangle!”

  • MikeC.

    @danfields – I hear you. There are reports all around that Jackson had his people asking about the job. He’s just playing his “I’m aloof and above this” card because nobody begged him to take the job. I wish Knicks had taken a run at Sloan. His teams did a thing or two running pick and rolls.

  • http://www.nba.com danfields

    @redd: basketball aint that easy kid. in the situation the knicks found themselfes during the last years you need stability in the organization after all the drama and changes. when you have a coach under whom the team did well and the players stand up for without any other name dropping then this is a no brainer, sign that coach.
    nobody argues that jackson is one of the greatest coaches of all time but in this case it is pretty obvious that he is just a little offended. there were rumours during the first round that he expressed interest in coaching the knicks and nobody in the knicks organization got in touch with him.
    the knicks two biggest concerns now are not the coach, they are absolutely fine with woodson.
    the first one: they need to get a better athletic trainers and physiotherapist.
    the second one: they have to worry about bringing back lin, smith, fields and novak.

  • http://www.nba.com danfields

    @MikeC: exactly

  • ClydeSays

    I don’t know why Jax would even want an interview. You’ve got an owner who thinks the team is his personal NBA2k12 team. He wanted Melo because he wanted him
    . Not because it made any basketball sense. Amare has such a long history of injury, his 100 million dollar contract couldnt be insured. Lin played well under D’Antoni for 20 games, but let’s see a season of decent games. Phil might be an a$$ for pointing it out, but he’s right.

  • http://www.nba.com danfields

    he wanted an interview coz ny is a big market and jax allways loved the big stage and i guess it might hve been an ultimate challenge for him to handle these guys. but come on, he was able to handle guys like rodman and artes/mwp quite good. so i guess he wouldve been fine in ny too. bt thats not the point. untill lin got hurt he had some solid games under woodson too btw. in ny its not clear if they can keep lin anyway.
    and we all dont know whats gonna happen next season. first off: it wouldve been nice to got anthony WITHOUT f**ng up the whole roster. doland shouldve been waiting for last summer instead of giving up so much talent for melo. that was really stupid. but what stat did for the knicks in 10/11 was priceless. as a die hard knicks fan ive been waiting for this more then 10 years. pay him 200 i dont give a f**k. the knicks cant turn back time anyway. the roster is what it is now so is the staff. the situation is not perfect but i see a big improvement compared to the last decade. plus the last season as a knick was the most exciting (not the most successful) nba season ive ever seen (yupp, i was lovin linsanity and woodsanity). maybe the knicks r no contenders but they r a playoff team for years to come n it couldve been worse. at least im not a bobcats or raptors fan

  • http://www.thesmashbrothas.com zen garden

    the knicks are toooo soft they bring shame to all the old school knicks teams

  • http://slamonline.com Datkid

    he may have been offended that he wasn’t begged to coach, but there’s also no way he would’ve actually done it. cosign mike C. This team doesn’t fit together. Honestly if you just left the Lakers would you REALLY wanna go to the massive headache that is NY? and for the record woodson isn’t the best fit, although Melo was a MONSTER under him.

  • http://slamonline.com Datkid

    cosign danfield. it was incredibly STUPID to trade that whole team for melo. if he signs as a FA they’re suddenly a deep, hyper flexible speedy team with the one of the league’s most versatile offensive threats.

  • http://blackamericaweb.com charliewinning

    Melo is NY’s biggest problem. STAT was fine before he got there. Melo is a black hole on the court, and it renders Amare useless.

  • http://slamonline.com Datkid

    I would trade stat before I’d trade melo. melo may have messed things up, but at least he can work with chandler. STAT and Chandler are horrible together.

  • Basketball iQ

    keeping woodson was stupid… the players go out on the court and do what they want thats why they like woodson. in all actuality, HES WORSE THAN D’ANTONIO … wait for it. Carmelo didnt pass the ball twice in the miami series. everytime he caught it, iso, iso, iso, iso, iso… He needs a coach that will get into his az and make him involve his teammates.. but new york as a city of know-it-alls, wont let’em

  • Ill Smith

    @charliewinning Nah homie, STAT is the real issue. Like PJax said ‘Stoudemire’s a really good player. But he’s gotta play in a certain system and a way’. He needs the PG to feed him constantly & no matter how much you dislike it, he can get his own buckets. Not to mention Melo’s April run trumped anything Stoudemire ever did in a Knicks uni.

  • http://blackamericaweb.com charliewinning

    I disagree. Before Lin and Melo, STAT was doing just fine with mediocre Felton. STAT was MVP of the team. I do agree that he and Chandler don’t work well but with Lin back the team would have better success if Melo wasn’t there. Melo’s style won’t change no matter who he plays with and it hasn’t been successful in Denver or NY. It never will be. Ball movement cannot be achieved with him on any team. Even if STAT truly needs a pg to be successful (which I disagree with), STAT+decent pg>>Melo+constant iso’s and no ball movement.

  • MikeC.

    Like them or not, the NBA is a better place when the Knicks are relevant. Same with the Celtics. Lakers will always be good because the combination of Laker history and LA weather will always be a lure for Free Agents. The NBA is a better place when the Lakers are great for awhile, then suck hard for a couple of years.

  • J. Lee

    If Phil Jackson is such a great coach, wouldn’t he be able to make this NY Knicks team work?

  • Ill Smith

    STAT & the NY Nuggets were a barely 500 team. With just Melo in the lineups NYK was something like 15-6 & everyone had a designated role with less focus on making sure Stoudemire got his. Say what you want about Melo’s game but be guarantees you a playoff spot. I can’t say the same for Amare…

  • http://www.nba.com danfields

    the knicks just gotta implement the 08/09 denver nuggets offense when billups fed melo efficiently and the nuggets reached the conference finals in the west.
    it is possible to find a ballance between melo isos and ball movement. for that a team needs a solid point guard. if they can keep lin i think woodson will make that work. even though lin isnt as good as billups was, after a full training camp things should be fine for the knicks offense.

  • Rainman

    @ ill smith:…what? With melo NY had an under .500 ball record, right up untill woodson

  • Rainman

    *untill woodson took over the coaching job(or after D’aintoni left, if u know what i mean lol)

  • Knick’s Fan

    I agree with Phil. Personnel is defintely top-heavy thanks to Knick’s management failing to provide a balanced team. The Knicks would be better suited for pick-and-roll basketball as opposed to having superstar players execute the iso-play game, which is better suited for more athletic players and teams with up-tempo offense. Examples, combo/attack guards like Russell Westbrook or fast break teams like the Miami Heat. Unfortunately, Stoudemire will NEVER be as good as he was in Phoenix and Anthony is another one that while talented cannot carry a team with mid-range jumpers. A set of mid/long-range shooters (i.e. two shooting guards) could be what NY needs as opposed to running the iso-play solely through Melo. Shumpert is injured, Davis’ career is done, Novak is a forward, Lin is point, Forget Toney, Smith is more of a combo/attack guard, Bibby is past his prime, and what happened to Landry Fields? Honestly, I believe the Knicks should trade up for Melo in exchange for two top shooting guards and a solid small forward that can double as power forward on the pick-and-roll plays. I don’t see this being addressed or adjusted by the Knicks at all whatsoever.

    Serious question though, is there something seriously wrong with training? player development? personality management? How could management/coaching/staff not generate chemistry between Stoudemire/Anthony? (If there is no chemistry, have one of them be the top sixth man on the second rotation.) Why do the Knicks only have one power forward? (Do not tell me Jeffries is one, clearly cannot play the center position either accumulating just a 1.8 in efficiency) Again, what happened to Landry Fields?

    This team will never get better and they never seem to learn from what has and has not worked up until it’s too late. The most I can expect of this team is perhaps another play-off run, possibly to the semi-finals and eliminated in 6 games at best. Perhaps the Nets will have a better run at this basketball thing in NY than the tenured Knicks have managed to squander.