Mar 17, 2014

    Jackson to join NY Knicks as president


    PHIL Jackson has signed on to become president of the New York Knicks, according to a report on Saturday by ESPN.

    The reported deal is expected to pay him US$12 million (S$15 million) per year but does not include a stake in ownership.

    The National Basketball Association team revealed that a "major announcement" is scheduled tomorrow morning at Madison Square Garden.

    The ESPN report said Jackson will be in charge of the Knicks' basketball operations. However, general manager Steve Mills will reportedly continue to have a significant role in the team's front office.

    It is the first full-time front-office position for the 68-year-old Jackson, who served as an adviser to the Detroit Pistons last year when they were seeking a new coach. The team ended up hiring Maurice Cheeks, who was fired after going 21-29.

    Jackson won a record 11 NBA championships as coach of the Chicago Bulls and Los Angeles Lakers in the 1990s and 2000s.

    While the Lakers had significant interest in bringing Jackson back in some capacity, formal talks never materialised. Reportedly, the Lakers did not contact Jackson's representatives and the team were not prepared to offer him a role similar to the one the Knicks are giving him.

    One of Jackson's biggest challenges will be making a decision on pending free agent Carmelo Anthony. The star forward plans to opt out of the final year of his contract this summer. However, Anthony said he would like to meet Jackson to talk about the team's plans before deciding whether to stay.

    Jackson is also likely to hire a new coach. It has been widely speculated that Mike Woodson will be dismissed at the end of the season. Steve Kerr, Brian Shaw and Kurt Rambis are considered possible candidates.