Phil Jackson Is Luckier Than Catching a Drunken Leprechaun

Bare KnucksAnalyst IJune 11, 2009

DENVER - MAY 29:  Head coach Phil Jackson of the Los Angeles Lakers reacts in the first half against the Denver Nuggets in Game Six of the Western Conference Finals during the 2009 NBA Playoffs at Pepsi Center on May 29, 2009 in Denver, Colorado. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement.  (Photo by Doug Pensinger/Getty Images)


It is tough to argue against a head coach when you simply take a glance at the Nine NBA Championship wins under his belt, but Phil Jackson is not worthy of all the praise he receives. Sure he’s got plenty of hardware, but when you take a look at his successful career more meticulously, you will find that it is extremely deceptive.

Jackson’s first title came in the 90'-’91 season with the Chicago Bulls, which paved the way for his first ‘three-peat.’ It didn’t hurt being blessed with a team that consisted of the one and only Michael Jordan, along with players like Scottie Pippen and Horace Grant. Jordan ‘retired’ after the Bulls three-peat, and guess what happened? No more titles for Phil and his Chicago Bulls squad.

After he gave his baseball career a shot and realized America’s pastime was not his forte, Air Jordan came out of retirement to pick up where he left off, this time with virtually an All-Star team. His Airness wasted no time in putting a fourth championship ring on Phil’s hand.

Now that his star was back, Jackson could hop back on the train which Michael Jordan conducted and let MJ and crew carry him to greatness. The Bulls three-peated for the second time in the decade, with the first title coming during the 95'-96' season. Are all these championship wins a result of spectacular coaching? No way! Let’s take a look at this Chicago Bulls Roster which Phil had for his second three-peat and break it down:

Michael Jordan – Hands down the greatest player of all time
Scottie Pippen – Overshadowed by Jordan, but was a true all-star himself (named one of the 50 Greatest Players in NBA history)
Dennis Rodman – Arguably the best defending/rebounding forward of all time
Toni Kukoc – Could play any position on the floor besides PG. Won the Sixth Man of the Year Award in 95'-‘96
Steve Kerr – Retired with the best three point field goal percentage of all time (45.4 percent).
Along with Luc Longley and a productive bench.

God damn! Talk about a stacked team. Anyone with a pulse could lead this team to a championship!

With Pippen and Rodman’s departures from Chi town pending and Jordan retiring, Phil Jackson decided to hang it up. What’s the matter Phil? Don’t want to coach without a ridiculously stacked team? [Read more...]