Phil Jackson Still The Captain Of New York Knicks' Ship

By Gustavo Braga
Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports
Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports

Now that Derek Fisher was officially announced as the 26th head coach of the New York Knicks, fans can start thinking ahead as far as Carmelo Anthony and the next season are concerned.

Fisher mentioned how confident he is about the current roster and what he can do with it. He said he is also very comfortable with the triangle system and that the guys on the team will thrive under it, but I can’t stop hearing Phil Jackson‘s voice behind it all. Jackson wanted an inexperienced coach from the beginning who he could mentor and guide through the trials and tribulations of transitioning from player to coach, and it seems he got what he wanted.

Jackson is known for a lot of things, but he’s mainly known for being one of the most successful coaches to ever walk the sidelines of the basketball court, and I don’t think he is done with it yet. He has been coaching — or at least acting as leader — during the activities the team has been involved in this offseason, and despite saying that his health and energy can’t cope with the job anymore, his philosophy is going to be heavily involved in any decisions Fisher makes as a coach.

So what we can expect is that the synergy between head coach and president of basketball operations is going to be one of master and apprentice, with the master being responsible for the big shots. Think of it this way: Jackson will determine what kind of system is going to be played, how the pieces on the roster are going to be put to use and how the team must be put together, while Fisher will be the leader he has always been in the locker room, only now he will be on the sidelines. Fisher will use his experience and championship pedigree to motivate and keep the team together as a unit, bring the best out of the different types of personalities and make everyone focus on the same ultimate goal. In other words, he will be the first mate while Jackson will continue to be the captain of the ship, determining the course and speed at which the ship will sail. Jackson chooses the destination, and Fisher handles the bureaucracy of getting the crew together to make sure the ship gets there — at least until Phil is comfortable stepping down and letting the rookie coach run the show.

It’s a pretty good deal for both parts if you ask me, especially when Phil and Derek are getting $60 million and $25 million respectively in the process.

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