Despite their Bulls championship connection, Scottie Pippen blames New York Knicks president Phil Jackson for the team’s incompetence.
Scottie Pippen spoke out against the man that coached him to six championship wins. In an appearance on ESPN’s “The Jump” on Thursday, Pippen made it clear that Phil Jackson is to blame for the mess that is going on with the New York Knicks.
Whoa. Scottie Pippen says Phil Jackson, his old coach, hasn't put the right pieces on the floor, says Phil should go. He feels bad for Melo: https://t.co/2GrHclsvBe
— Ian Begley (@IanBegley) March 30, 2017
“To be honest with you, I’m going to have to go at my old coach Phil Jackson,” Pippen said. “I think he just hasn’t put the right pieces on the floor. I give a lot of credit to Carmelo who is being very professional in getting through these 82 game season. And now he’s being benched to some degree, they’re taking a lot of his minutes away. But this team just hasn’t had it. They haven’t had it since Phil Jackson landed there. There hasn’t been any upside to think that the New York Knicks were gonna be a contender, and I just feel bad for Carmelo having to go through this and having to deal with this.”
Pippen’s points are extremely valid.
Jackson’s record as Knicks president doesn’t match his coaching success, sitting at 77-162. The Knicks have had four coaches during Phil’s tenure. There has been a ton of roster turnover with most of his signings not working out. Most recently, oft-injured Joakim Noah received a 4-year, $72 million deal. Noah averaged a disappointing 5.5 points and 8.8 rebounds while appearing in only 46 games this season. He’s currently serving a suspension for using a banned substance while rehabbing, which will carry over to next season.
The one bright spot for Jackson has been Kristaps Porzingis and at the current pace, it remains to be seen if he’ll remain a Knick once he hits the market.
Jackson decided midway through this season to re-emphasize the triangle, an offensive system that players are not clamoring to run. Next year, the team will be all in on the triangle, which may affect the Knicks ability to sign any of the key free agents this summer.
Although Jackson has an opt-out clause in his contract after this season, he has already committed to returning next year unless there is a lockout. Owner James Dolan has also committed to Jackson until 2018-2019 when his contract expires.