NBA Playoffs Approaching = A Lot Of Phil Jackson
Some say that Phil Jackson attaches himself to the best players in the NBA, and thus, wins a lot of games. To me, he associates himself with organizations that are diligent in acquiring great talent, and that’s when Jackson’s skills shine through. Speaking of shining through, both his expertise and his team will be front and center when the NBA postseason kicks off this weekend. Kobe Bryant goes after his first title without Shaquille O’Neal – during this interview Phil notes that it’s such a rarity to win a championship without a dominant big man. Luckily for Jackson, Andrew Bynum is back and playing big for him. The Western Conference will provide some tough match-ups for his team, despite their 65 wins. Phil Jackson joined the Dan Patrick Show to discuss a minor, but important difference between the regular season and postseason, a day where his players coached for him, Twitter, and whether or not the media has forgot about Kobe Bryant.
A story about his coaching, or lack thereof, in a past playoff game:
“In one series, in Miami, in ‘96 or ‘97, I’m not sure which year it was, I had Michael (Jordan) playing Timmy Hardaway, and he had twenty points in the first half. Michael was having a hard time handling his crossover and whatever. I came in at halftime and said ‘What you guys wanna do?’ And, they voluntarily said, ‘Put Ron Harper on him.’ I said, ‘You’re right. I should have thought of that in the 2nd quarter.’ (Dan Patrick: ‘Michael even said put Harp on him?’) Yeah. And, Ronny went out and did a job on him the rest of the half.”
On a subtle, but important difference between the regular season and playoffs:
“In the regular season, you do play your bench because you know that they have to rest your starters, and you have to regulate minutes. You get in to the playoffs and all those timeouts go from 110 seconds to sometimes two to three minutes. So, the recovery rate’s a lot better for your regulars – they can extend their minutes two to three to four minutes a game. So, you can play your starters in the 40s, as opposed to the regular season. You gotta deal with guys, 36, 37 minutes when they get in to an age level like Kobe’s at, he has a lot of miles on his legs. That’s a difference. Those short runs teams make where they go 6-0 or 8-0 in a game, you can hopefully eliminate that by putting in stoppers.”Phil on if Kobe is almost overlooked by the media, Twitter, and the full interview after the jump.
On whether or not the media has looked past Kobe because he’s been so good for so long:
“It’s very likely that that does happen. There’s that crossover and there’s that play, we’ve seen that before, and we’ve seen those finishes before. I will tell you this, that happened with Michael Jordan in ‘93 and (Charles) Barkley was an MVP that year. Charles had a good year but there was definitely no one in the league that could touch Michael Jordan at the time. It was like, ‘Well, let’s move on.’ Now, LeBron’s had an absolutely phenomenal year and he’s done a lot of wonderful things. I think the odds on favorite – the way everyone in the media’s talking – I think LeBron’s gonna be the MVP this year.”
His policy on players using Twitter:
“I caught a player on a cell phone, didn’t make a big deal about it, Milwaukee had their issue, Charlie (Villanueva). I had to challenge him and tell him I wanted to know what’s going on, just checking those things out all the time because it’s so prevalent and it’s readily available. We are not trying to limit access but don’t want free access all the time to everything that’s going on.”