Can New York Knicks Lure Phil Jackson?
The end of this inevitable Eastern Conference playoff sweep on Sunday promises the beginning of a most inevitable pursuit: (James) Dolan chasing his next savior, Phil Jackson. Along the way, Dolan ought to forget selling Jackson on his New York Knicks nostalgia and sentiment, on the joys of coaching (Carmelo) Anthony. Jackson knows his own history here, and knows he never would’ve won a solitary title with the Lakers and Bulls had ‘Melo been one of his cornerstones.
Dolan doesn’t need to come with the elaborate recruiting presentation that he did for James for a simple reason: Above everything else, this is a cash deal. No salary cap, no limits.
In so many ways, this simplifies everything for Dolan. Madison Square Garden management gets to play to the boss’ strength, perhaps his greatest gift as a sport owner: overspending. Jackson has 13 championship rings – 11 as a coach and two as a Knicks player – and Dolan could need to pay him $1 million a year for every one of those titles. The Knicks aren’t chasing a coach, but a max-salary star with no max-salary restrictions.
Three years, $40 million-plus ought to do it.