Phil Jackson’s time as president of the New York Knicks was at best forgettable, but local media may not have done him any favors.
Speaking this week with Marc Berman of the New York Post, Jackson’s confidant and biographer Charley Rosen expressed his belief that the New York media resented the Zen Master for his success with the Chicago Bulls.
“Yes, he was a Knick, but he was also the coach of the Bulls who beat New York in the playoffs,” said Rosen of Jackson. “If you’re too successful, people want to knock you off the pedestal. It happened in the New York media.”
Jackson won two titles in 11 seasons with the Knicks as a player from 1967 to 1978 and returned as team president from 2014 to 2017. Between these two bouts, however, he enjoyed great success at the expense of the Knicks, eliminating them in the playoffs. four times in the 90s as a bull coach.
Jackson’s tenure as President Knicks has been an unequivocal failure regardless: the team has gone through three coaches and lost 50 or more games in every single season. But Rosen may have a point on the New York press’s treatment of Jackson, given that Jackson has deployed most of the blame despite the Knicks having deeper organizational tensions present.