Unlike players, coaches will always be rumored to return unless they’re dead or senile.
Phil Jackson is neither. He still gives astute observations (albeit poorly typed) through Twitter or other media.
He also has firm ties with the Laker franchise.
This season may be D’Antoni’s last chance for redemption. He may pull it off, as expectations are low and he has a more D’Antoni-esque lineup.
But for 2014, when they usher in the new era of the Lakers, can you picture D’Antoni on the bench?
Which superstar in the league will bolt their team and say “I wanna play for Mike D’Antoni.’ Maybe Steve Nash, but he’s already there.
Which superstar in the league would do the same for Phil Jackson?
It looked like Phil Jackson and the Lakers had parted ways when they snubbed him by picking Mike D’Antoni to replace Mike Brown last season. The choice confused everyone and clearly was a mistake as their pathetic record and horrible transition defense demonstrated.
The Lakers spent the entire off-season chasing after Dwight Howard and losing him. Most see this as a huge loss for an aging team that looks like they only got weaker from last season. Jeanie Buss kept the gossip flame alive by speaking publicly about Jackon’s return. I guess that only makes sense since she’s engaged him, but what kind of signals are the front office sending with comments like this?
“I don’t know how things are going to turn out,” Buss recently said of Jackson. “I just don’t think he’s done contributing yet. I think he’s got a lot to give.”
She went on to state how Jackson is very supportive of D’Antoni and believes he will be successful with his current lineup, but we all know success and championships are two different things. Phil Jackson wins championships. Mike D’Antoni simply wins regular season games and last year he didn’t even do much of that.
Given Jackson’s relationship with Buss, the Lakers organizations proven lack of patience (Mike Browns’s quick exit), and Jackson’s desire to get back into the game, it’s hard to not see him coming back to Los Angeles some time soon.