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Friday, January 4, 2013
Could Phil's bliss prevent Nets hookup?

By Mike Mazzeo

While he hasn’t spoken to Phil Jackson, ESPN The Magazine’s Chris Broussard believes Jackson’s engagement to Lakers executive Jeanie Buss will not hinder his chances of coaching if he decides to come out of retirement.

Buss has always publicly maintained she would have no problem with Jackson coaching another NBA team.

"I have a lot of role models," Buss told in 2011. "The first one is my best friend, Linda Rambis, because Kurt's in Minnesota and she's here. I learned that from 2004 when he retired. A relationship isn't just about space; it's about emotion and heart and all those good things."

If the Brooklyn Nets call, Jackson would be willing to listen to them, Broussard reports. But right now, the Nets are set with interim coach P.J. Carlesimo, who is 3-1 since taking over for Avery Johnson, who was fired last Thursday.

“Unless things really go south, he’ll probably lead them the rest of the season,” Broussard said.

Broussard does expect the Nets to reach out to Jackson at some point, whether it’s this season or in the offseason.

“He is their ultimate candidate,” Broussard said.

Still, the Nets (17-15) are looking to do big things this season, and they don’t want an in-season coaching search hanging over the team. They’re just two games behind the Pacers (19-13) for fourth place in the weak Eastern Conference, which would give them homecourt advantage in the first round of the playoffs.

As Broussard noted, it’s rare for an established coach to come in midway through the season, and Jackson’s triangle offense would be a difficult one to master.

Given all this, expect the only “P.J.” leading the Nets in 2012-13 to be Carlesimo.