Knicks owner cites triangle offense for Phil Jackson’s downfall in NYC

The Score

When Phil Jackson took over as New York Knicks president in March 2014, he had one major concern over the decision-making hierarchy: Would the team's notoriously meddlesome owner James Dolan give him enough space to install his vision?

Dolan says that was initially the plan before three years of largely despondent basketball – the Knicks averaged just 26.7 wins over Jackson' three full seasons at the helm – forced him to intervene.

"Look, when I brought on Phil, the big question is, 'Are you going to stay out of it?' And I swore I would stay out of it, and I did. I stayed out of it," Dolan told ESPN's Ian O'Connor. "And it wasn't until the very end that I had to make a decision that it clearly wasn't working. I think Phil knew it, too. I think he hoped I would have more stamina, but I didn't."

Specifically, Dolan cites Jackson's insistence on the triangle offense, a strategy which the Hall of Fame coach utilized to devastating effect while winning six titles with the Chicago Bulls and five with the Los Angeles Lakers. Despite his hand-picked coaches – first Derek Fisher, then interim coach Kurt Rambis, and finally Jeff Hornacek – attempting to install variations of the triangle, the philosophy never took hold.

#basketball, #professional

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