Were there any risks behind Phil Jackson’s signings?

Phil Jackson New York Knicks

The New York Knicks are one of the headlines that people will be watching this season. Phil Jackson made a wave during the offseason signing some well known names to add to this Knicks squad. Many people have various opinions of this team simply because they know health is a factor and chemistry is something that’s hard to predict. However, Phil Jackson is very optimistic about his signings and believe that things can work out (via The Big Podcast with Shaq):

“We talked about, in our initial meeting [of camp], about the fact that this is all handpicked,” Jackson told O’Neal. “This is a handpicked team. They all fit together in a way in which — we haven’t had this opportunity since I’ve been in New York. A lot of it was we simply had players who were here because of the past administration. And this is the first time we had an opportunity to not only get players, but also have money to go out and solicit players off the free-agent market.”

“Both [Rose and Noah], I think, have some career left, even though they’ve had injuries, and it’s what they call risk-reward,” Jackson said. “What was the risk and what was the reward? And I felt it was a minimal risk and a great reward if we were able to put together a good team. Bringing Jeff Hornacek in as a coach, who wants to play a pretty fast pace, and having guards that can play that pace, benefited our style.”

Viewing what New York did over the summer, Jackson believes it was a minimal risk but I don’t believe there was any risk at all. Some thought going the rebuilding route was the best route but with Carmelo Anthony still having some game left, why not go out swinging?

Without these moves, the Knicks weren’t going to make the playoffs and it was hard to name anyone on the roster not named Anthony or Porzingis. Phil Jackson and the Knicks had nothing to lose this summer. It was either be in playoff contention or be at the bottom of the NBA and have a losing season. And if things don’t work out and they still end up having a losing season then what was really lost? Excitement is back in New York and Madison Square Garden is rumbling the loudest that it has in years. I mean when MSG is chanting “Jennings” in a preseason game then you know they’re amped for what’s to come.

Like I’ve said on numerous occasions, I’m on this New York bandwagon and I believe they can make the playoffs. It will take a healthy season and some time for them to get acquainted but they definitely have the potential to be a solid team. Phil Jackson did a good job in free agency granted there weren’t many options for this team. But to go out swinging was the right choice in my eyes and if they’re successful then it was a ‘no risk, high reward’ season.


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