There have been rumblings lately regarding the Golden State Warriors that head coach Mark Jackson could be on his way out. Part of that is due to the fact that the Warriors haven’t lived up to their billing in the 2013-14 NBA season, but also partially because Jackson has rubbed some people in the media and organization the wrong way.
However, don’t consider the players in the camp of those wanting Jackson to not be in-tow next season, especially veteran center Jermaine O’Neal. In a recent report from Diamond Leung of the San Jose Mercury News, O’Neal went as far as to call the rumors of Jackson potentially being fired soon “ridiculous” and “unfair.”
O’Neal didn’t stop there, though, in discussing the future of his head coach and, in turn, his own future. After this year, which will be O’Neal’s 18th in the NBA, he will almost undoubtedly consider the notion of retiring from the league. However, O’Neal says that if he were to return for a 19th season, it would be to the Warriors and Jackson being his head coach would be a major deciding factor.
Though there is certainly a lot of bad blood and animosity surrounding Jackson right now, it can’t be discredited that seemingly every one of his players is behind him and that this team believes in him and what he’s telling this team near unanimously. While the front office and others may have issues with Jackson, they need to take into consideration how the players feel about the coach before making any brash decisions. If you ask O’Neal, though, it shouldn’t even be a concern at this point.