Rumors are abounding that The Brooklyn Nets are targeting Phil Jackson to replace the recently fired Avery Johnson.
Johnson , October and November NBA Coach of the month was let go after the Nets lost 10 out of 13 games, including a blow-out loss to the Boston Celtics on Christmas Day.
The Nets have made some big moves in the off-season in an effort to become a force in the East signing Deron Williams to a 5 year $98 million deal. But they also have a lot of baggage, namely Joe Johnson in a trade with $90 million left on his contact; add Brooks Lopez and Kris Humphries who are under-performing and also have high dollar contracts and you’re looking at long-term personnel issues. A coaching change looked to be the first definitive change in salvaging a season.
No formal discussions have taken place, and it is not even clear that Jackson wants the job. He may still be smarting from the Laker fiasco when he was publicly courted and expecting to sign a deal only to be blind-sided with the announcing of Mike D’Antoni as the new Laker Head Coach. Some things to take into consideration are that the legendary coach will not have a talented filled roster that he experienced with coaching stints at Chicago and Los Angeles; he also may not get the control that he desires and will be under the gun to produce immediate results for principal owner Mikhail Prokhorov.
Jackson and winning are synonymous in basketball and his mere presence brings instant credibility and anticipation to any organization that he is associated with. Known for his ability to bring out the best in players with his “Zen-like” approach to coaching, Jackson and his style might be just the shot to jump-start the Nets and turn things around.
Jeff Van Gundy, former coach (Knicks, Rockets) and current basketball analyst, has also been mentioned but is not interested in talks until after the season is over out of respect for his colleague interim coach P.J. Carlesimo.
“I would never comment on a job that was filled,” Van Gundy told ESPN. “I was an interim coach. I hope P.J. has great success there. He’s someone I respect greatly.”
A lot of hype has surrounded the Nets; let’s see if they can find the right coach that can turn the hype into reality. The Brooklyn borough fans are watching and waiting with anticipation.
Your Jersey Girlfriend,