Even during a 2013-14 season marred with turmoil and countless negatives, the New York Knicks have remained prevalent due to recent news that legendary NBA coach Phil Jackson could agree to become the team’s president of basketball operations—just don’t ask Brooklyn Nets forward Paul Pierce about it.
According to ESPN’s Ramona Shelburne, a deal between Jackson and the Knicks may be finalized on Friday, March 14.
Phil Jackson's agent Todd Musburger is in LA today there is hope agreement to be Knicks president will be finalized today, sources tell ESPN— Ramona Shelburne (@ramonashelburne) March 14, 2014
Stefan Bondy of the New York Daily News learned the hard way not to ask Pierce of New York's plans, as he unveiled the following exchange via Twitter:
Asked Paul Pierce for his reaction to Phil Jax joining the Knicks: "I don't talk about the Knicks. No Knicks questions. Ever."— Stefan Bondy (@NYDNInterNets) March 14, 2014
“The Truth” certainly lived up to his nickname with that blunt answer, because he didn’t sugarcoat his feelings at all.
This shouldn’t come as much of a surprise, though, because Pierce has been part of rivalries with the Knicks throughout his 16 seasons as a pro—15 with the Boston Celtics and now in his first season with Brooklyn.
After a rough start to the 2013-14 campaign—mirroring the in-state rival Knicks—the Nets have turned their fortunes around. They've won three straight, including eight of their last 10 contests. At 33-30 overall, Brooklyn has the fifth-best record in the Eastern Conference—a half game ahead of the Washington Wizards and two games back of the Chicago Bulls.
The season series between the Knicks and Nets is knotted at one game apiece. They'll meet again in Madison Square Garden on April 2 (which will be televised on ESPN), and at the Barclays Center for their final regular-season matchup on April 15 (televised on TNT).
While Jackson's potential arrival likely won't change anything for the Knicks this season, they're only 3.5 games back of the eighth-place Atlanta Hawks in the Eastern Conference standings. Beating the Nets moving forward would go a long way toward attaining a playoff seed before season's end.
Father Time has caught up to Pierce, who is averaging 13.5 points, 4.8 rebounds and 2.6 assists per game—all down from a year ago.
Despite his evident decline, Pierce continues to focus on his team rather than the goings on of a rival franchise. After all, it’s not his job to provide insight on Jackson or the Knicks.