Phil Jackson Returns To Do Business With the Los Angeles Lakers -- Sort Of

By Lucas Rubio
Jayne Kamin-Oncea-USA TODAY Sports

Phil Jackson is teaming up with wife and Los Angeles Lakers Senior Vice President Jeanie Buss to produce a TV series for Showtime, according to Variety. The scripted series will take a behind-the-scenes look at a professional basketball team.

Jackson is credited as an executive producer on the show along with yet another famous Laker — current Lakers assistant coach Kurt Rambis. Buss, on the other hand, will be producing the series through the production company Street Reason Entertainment.

To some Lakers fans, Jackson’s involvement in the series may seem like a testament to his willingness to do business with the organization. And although his wife may not exactly count as “Lakers organization”, if you put together the elements of this news — TV series, Buss and Rambis, a drama about a professional basketball team — it sounds an awful lot to me like Jackson misses the spotlight of Lakers basketball.

Fans should also note the curiously appropriate name of the TV network on which the show is supposed to appear: Showtime.

Then again, any connection between Jackson, the Lakers and the Showtime series could simply result from a Lakers fan’s desperation for Jackson to replace Mike D’Antoni as head coach, a wish that fans expressed long ago and in unison when they chanted “We Want Phil” during a game after the Lakers had decided to hire D’Antoni over Jackson last year.

And yet, Jackson was reportedly becoming so bored back in April that he was “itching” to return to the NBA, according to ESPN LA’s Ramona Shelburne. Could the Showtime series be Jackson’s first step toward reconciliation with the Buss family and Lakers organization?

Perhaps. At least, with ESPN officially ranking the Lakers 12th in the Western Conference, it’s the future of the organization rather than the upcoming season that Lakers fans are concentrating on.

And the return of Phil Jackson, no matter how unlikely the idea may seem, gives Lakers fans something to hope for.

Lucas Rubio is a Rant Sports contributing writer. You can read his blog by visiting Playerz League Sports Blog and follow him on Twitter @PlayerzLeague.

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