Phil Jackson Has Advice for the Los Angeles Lakers

By Eric N. Ellington
Jim O’Connor-USA TODAY Sports

I thought Phil Jackson was retired, but seems like he’s ready to be in the mix yet again. On ESPN’s Colin Herd radio show, Jackson had a few words of advice for Los Angels Lakers coach Mike D’Antoni. Trust me — he needs all the advice he can get.

Jackson said:

“I would find one of my assistant coaches to work with me to help them just as quickly as possible because I know what they need. I think they need to get back inside, where the strength of their team is and use that presence in there to dominate games. I think there is a way to do that.”

Coach D’Antoni finally figured out how to use his players correctly, ending the season with a five-game winning streak to sneak into the playoffs as a seventh seed. However, the season-ending injury to Kobe Bryant and the lack of leadership (getting kicked out of a playoff game) from the supposedly max-contract player in Dwight Howard led to the Lakers being swept by the San Antonio Spurs.

Jackson was also bothered by the fact that Pau Gasol struggled, only scoring a career-low 13.7 points per game, as well as all of the minutes Bryant had to log just for the team to remain competitive. Jackson even attributed fatigue as being a factor for Kobe’s injury. Jackson also criticized D’Antoni for not getting the best out of his players — pointing the finger mainly at Howard.


Eric N. Ellington covers the Los Angeles Lakers for Rant Sports. Follow him at @EricNEllington

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