Yesterday, the Nets fired head coach, Avery Johnson. Johnson, who was November’s Coach of the Month, watched his team post a 3-10 record in December. Many believe Johnson no longer inspired his team. Others are pointing the finger at Deron Williams who has a history of pushing out head coaches. In either scenario, the Nets will turn to assistant coach, PJ Carlisemo. Carliesemo’s career coaching record, 204-296, may not inspire the struggling Nets. Could Phil Jackson solve Brooklyn’s woes?
Reports suggest the Nets and their lavish owner will reach out Jackson. Despite ‘retiring’ after the 2010 season, Jackson seems to have the itch to coach again. Earlier this season, Jackson was shunned by the Lakers. Details were not disclosed, but many believe Jackson wanted a sweet heart coaching package (i.e. not travelling for some road trips). Despite some petty demands, Jackson brings along his championship rings and success with the Triangle Offense. Jackson’s Triangle Offenses captured 11 of the last 20 NBA Titles.
Phil Jackson brings a lot of success and flare, but he’s not a great fit for Brooklyn. Brooklyn’s roster is comprised of younger players that lack an identify. Jackson is used to having one or two dominant, go-to players at his disposal and Brooklyn lacks a true leader. In addition, Brooklyn does not have the personnel to run the Triangle Offense. The Triangle Offense is predicated by ball movement, player moment, and crisp outside shooting. Williams and Joe Johnson are above average shooters and facilitators, but Gerald Wallace and Kris Humphries are not ideal fits. In fact, the Triangle Offense needs a hybrid power forward that can pass well and shoot from the outside. Andray Blatche fits that billing, but Humphries isn’t making $10 million to sit on the bench. The Triangle Offense takes time to install and perfect, so the impantient Nets may not want to wait.
Phil Jackson is 67-years-old and should stay retired if he can’t fully committ himself. If he did come back, Jackson needs a ready-made contender and Brooklyn needs a lot of work. Brooklyn has some talented players, but the pieces simply don’t fit together. Williams and Johnson need a lot of touches and the Triangle Offense takes the ball out of the point guard’s hands. Despite his past success and history of coaching in New York, this is one situation Phil Jackson should avoid.