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Tuesday, May 20, 2014
Reggie to Phil: Interview Mark Jackson!

By Ian Begley

Old Knicks nemesis Reggie Miller has a message for Phil Jackson: Pick up the phone and call Mark Jackson!

“Shouldn’t he [Mark Jackson] get an interview just going off of his résumé?” Miller said Tuesday afternoon on a conference call to promote TNT’s coverage of the Western Conference finals. “... He certainly should get an interview. I’m not saying he should get the job. If Phil Jackson wants to go with a guy that he’s familiar with [and] that understands the triangle, he has every right to do that. But certainly Mark Jackson should get at least an interview.”

It’s unclear at this point if the Zen Master will reach out to Mark Jackson.

Reggie/Spike
Reggie Miller gives Mark Jackson the thumbs up.
ESPN.com’s Marc Stein and Ramona Shelburne reported Sunday that Phil Jackson is open to talking to Mark Jackson about the Knicks’ job.

Phil Jackson’s preference, though, is to hire a coach he has worked with in the past and to find someone who has strong knowledge of the triangle offense.

Mark Jackson doesn’t fit either category.

Derek Fisher, Luke Walton and Tyronn Lue do, which is why all three are mentioned as potential candidates. Kurt Rambis and Mike Dunleavy Sr. are also on the Knicks’ list of potential candidates.

But, according to Stein and Shelburne, Phil Jackson has realized after missing out on Steve Kerr that the options within his “inner circle” are limited. That could prompt the coach to start looking outside of it.

Does that mean Mark Jackson, fired by the Warriors earlier this month, gets an interview for the job? Miller sure hopes so.

“[He’s] a guy that’s been born and bred in New York and knows the media landscape of New Yorkers, who knows that city, who was rookie of the year in 1987-88,” said Miller, who played with Jackson in Indiana for parts of six seasons. “Obviously he knows the climate of the New York Knicks. I think that should warrant at least an interview.”

Jackson is currently working as an NBA game analyst for ESPN, but his duties with the network aren't expected to preclude him from taking a new head-coaching position.

Miller supports Kerr’s decision, offering his thoughts on Kerr’s decision to take the Golden State job instead of coaching the Knicks.

“I love this about Steve: It came down to family. He’s a West Coast guy, his family is in San Diego, his daughter will be a sophomore at Cal-Berkeley. It made more sense for the family,” said Miller, who will serve as an analyst for the Spurs-Thunder series. “For him to uproot and go 3,000 to 4,000 miles away and have everyone come visit once a month or once every two months?

“Yeah, the glamour of New York and coaching the Knicks is fantastic, don’t get me wrong. But to have your family that close and to be close to home and to have a ready-made team that won 51 games a season ago and top-10 player in Stephen Curry? I think those were the characteristics and the challenges he wanted, and I think that’s why he chose that.”

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