Phil Jackson Speaks On Carmelo, Kobe, And MJ In Q&A
The New York Knicks have plenty to prove this season with new management, new head coaching, and a new culture. Retaining superstar Carmelo Anthony this summer was a huge priority and win for new Knicks president Phil Jackson, who recently did an extensive Q&A with The New York Post’s Steve Serby to talk about Carmelo Anthony, the triangle, group-think, “The Wizard of Oz”, and the superstars he once coached,
Q: Is Kobe Bryant the model for Carmelo Anthony?
A: No. No one can approach that. I don’t expect anybody to be able to model their behavior after that, although Kobe modeled his behavior a lot about Michael Jordan, but he went beyond Michael in his attitude towards training, and I know Mike would probably question me saying that, but he did.
Jackson clearly has a special affinity towards Kobe Bryant and what they accomplished together. Obviously Jackson won’t be coaching Carmelo Anthony in New York, but his principles and influence will trickle through head coach Derek Fisher.
Q: How and why will the triangle offense make Carmelo a better player?
A: It’ll give him opportunity to be a passer, a rebounder, and probably easier spots to score from than he’s had before. I think. I hope that’s true for a lot of the players.
Q: Is Carmelo on board with this?
A: All we talked about in our negotiation was, “I’d like not to have to feel like I have to carry the load to score every night.” He wants some help.
Carmelo Anthony is a natural scorer, meaning scoring in any system won’t be hard for him. The adjustment within the post-oriented triangle will be working with his teammates on cutting harder and having the right spacing. It should create simpler opportunities for Anthony and make offense less stagnant.
That’s where Carmelo’s gonna move forward this year in that situation — the ball can’t stop. The ball has to continually move. It moves, or goes to the hoop on a shot or a drive or something like that. In our offense, that’s part of the process of getting players to play in that rhythm.
The Knicks are always a microscope team, despite their success or lack thereof. That will experience continued magnification as the Phil Jackson era takes turn in New York.