Phil Jackson Should Say 'No Thanks' to Los Angeles Lakers
Mike Brown has been fired as the Los Angeles Lakers head coach. Right away the wheels started to turn in Los Angeles to figure out who would take over the team that has its eyes on a 16th title. Bernie Bickerstaff will coach tonight's game at Staples Center. Red Auerbach is more likely to finish the season as the Lakers head coach than Bickerstaff.
Mike D'Antoni and Jerry Sloan have been mentioned on 710 ESPN in Los Angeles. But there is one name that everyone is wanting to hear. The equivalent of Superman to save the day is available.
Phil Jackson could return for his third time around with the Lakers and return them to their championship days. Arash Markazi of ESPN Los Angeles is calling for Jackson's return. Even Magic Johnson called for Jackson's return on ESPN.
Jackson should smile and say "It is flattering but no thank you."
Phil Jackson has absolutely nothing to gain and a lot to lose by returning to coaching.
He has already achieved all anyone could hope to accomplish in three lifetimes. The Zen Master has won more titles than anyone else and has the best winning percentage of any coach.
Most coaches would be happy with three trips to the NBA Finals in their career. Phil Jackson has led a team to three straight NBA Finals four different times. Three times he saw his team win three straight titles. Another time he had back-to-back championships.
Should Phil Jackson return to the Lakers this season?
If his return does not work, then it would partially spoil his reputation as a genius who leads his squads to multiple titles.
He should move on and the Lakers should as well. Eventually the Lakers will not be able to turn to the Zen Master every time the franchise faces trouble.
And if the Lakers fail to win this season with a different head coach, it can only improve his reputation. People would whisper "If Phil were here, we'd win."
At age 67, Phil Jackson is a father and a grandfather who has become a millionaire many times over and is arguably the greatest living coach of any sport.
The 2013 NBA title would do nothing to raise his stature.
Phil Jackson should enjoy this part of his life and bask in the fact that he has basically become any character that Clint Eastwood has played recently: The aging expert who has walked away from what he is great at only to be convinced to come out of retirement one more time.
He owes the Lakers and the world of basketball absolutely nothing.
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