Phil Jackson on Knicks after lottery: ‘We’re good at what we do’
Phil Jackson was relatively nonplussed following the New York Knicks’ slight slide down the board in the wake of Tuesday’s NBA Draft Lottery. But the Knicks president made assurances that the team’s brain trust is “good at what we do” and will make do how things played out.
The Knicks were slotted seventh ahead of the ping-pong balls’ bounces during the draft lottery with a 57.2 percent chance to stay that way. There was also a 0.01 percent chance of the Knicks dropping all the way down to the 10th spot. But a 22.6 percent chance remained for the Knicks to slide into the eighth spot, which is of course how the night ended.
Given what many pundits herald as a deep draft, Jackson expressed confidence the Knicks can land a great player at No. 8.
“Our opportunity [at] seven could have been 10, so eight we’ll live with,” Jackson said after the lottery, per ESPN’s Ian Begley. “I think that we’re good at what we do.”
To be fair to Jackson, the Knicks, who have gone 90-171 in his three-plus years and have been mired in perpetual dysfunction, did draft Kristaps Porzingis and otherwise have drafted well during his tenure.Still, this offseason will prove to be a critical one for his regime. Jackson already has put the Knicks in a terrible negotiating position by essentially stating Carmelo Anthony would be better off with another team. Reports suggest Jackson’s candid comments are wreaking havoc on Anthony’s trade value, thereby undercutting Jackson’s repeatedly expressed desire to move the veteran.
Granted, Anthony needs to waive his no-trade cause first. Although given the acrimonious relationship between Anthony and Jackson, it would seem the veteran’s exit out of New York is at this point a mere formality.
And with that, Jackson and company can move on and hope to land a player who can contribute immediately on the court. After all, Jackson says the Knicks know what they’re doing here.