From the desk of: DUTCH PANTS CAN'T JUMP
NEW YORK KNICKS: Club Set To Announce Phil Jackson Has Been Named Team President. He Now Has The Job Pat Riley Once Wanted, But For How Long?
Although the official announcement won't come till Tuesday, the New York Knickerbockers have tentatively signed Phil Jackson to become their club president.
I guess congratulations are in order, after I stop shaking my head over the fact that James Dolan stepped all over toes of the people who work for him once again. James Dolan has mastered the art of hiring people first, then firing his victims afterwards. That said, I suspect GM Steve Mills orchestrated his own exit by helping to bring in the man who will probably fire him. If his days at MSG aren't numbered, they should be.
I also feel the basketball team of MSG has hired their version of Glen Sather. Think of the peace of mind James Dolan will have knowing Glen Sather and Phil Jackson are running his teams. Among his circle friends, Jimmy is golden. Even the media is forced to agree he has people with winning experience running his organizations. Good for him, as perception is everything.
Rangers and Knicks fans know better though. James Dolan apparently gave Glen Sather a job for life, letting his history with Edmonton, not New York, speak for itself. Signing Jackson wreaks of more of the same to me.
Phil Jackson won a title here in New York as a Knicks member because he was surrounded by greater players than him. Phil won titles in Chicago and Los Angeles as a head coach, because he was afforded four of the greatest players to ever grace the NBA. Like Sather, that's all that will matter to James Dolan.
History says Phil Jackson will safely have a job here for as long as he wants to stay, no matter what transpires on the court under his reign. On that note, I do not believe Jackson will be able to to do anything Donnie Walsh couldn't do. The Knicks almost had it right then, but that was two GM's ago. Regardless, similar to Donnie Walsh, Jackson has another mess he must rescue the Knicks from.
One thing I know is sure. Phil Jackson will not tolerate any of James Dolan's micro-meddling. He is coming here to do things one way - Phil's way. In a bit of irony, Phil Jackson now has the job Pat Riley once wanted from the Knicks. Pat Riley entered the executive ranks by leaving the Knicks, while Phil Jackson joins the executive ranks by joining the Knicks.
As oversee'er, Phil Jackson will be charged with seeking out championship caliber coaches and players, instead of having such players handed to him. His triangle offense won't help him master the salary cap either. And, woe to his head coach, whom Phil Jackson will always feel superior to.
How long will this last? Phil Jackson isn't exactly a spring chicken. Turning the Knicks around may take another several years to achieve. Their draft is already quite compromised. And what if things do not go too well. How committed is he, really, to see things through?