Phil Jackson Rumors
After five years and three N.B.A. championships under Phil Jackson, and having thrived in a read-and-react triangle offense, Bryant was suddenly playing for a lifelong Houston Rocket with different sideline sensibilities. “It was an adjustment for him because I was a play caller,” Tomjanovich said. What Tomjanovich shared with Jackson, if not an offensive philosophy, was a gift for reading superstars and ultimately connecting with them. His time with Bryant was short during the 2004-5 season, when Tomjanovich quickly deduced that the stress of coaching had become damaging to his health, but at least one Laker urged him not to walk away. “Kobe tried to talk me out of it,” Tomjanovich said in a telephone interview, reflecting on his resignation, as well as his connection with Bryant, after just 43 games.
Tim Reynolds: Most NBA coaching wins with one franchise, including playoffs: 1. Gregg Popovich, Spurs, 1,450 2. Jerry Sloan, Jazz, 1,223 3. Red Auerbach, Celtics, 885 4. Phil Jackson, Lakers, 728 5. Red Holzman, Knicks, 667 6. Phil Jackson, Bulls, 656 7. Erik Spoelstra, Heat, 655
LaVine was 3-years old by the time time the MJ, Scottie Pippen-led and Phil Jackson coached Bulls earned their second three-peat in the Windy City. Thank Heavens for YouTube and for ESPN’s airing of The Last Dance during the spring. “I think the thing I didn’t realize is how much stress and how much pressure he had on him and how he handled it,” LaVine told me.
What also might catch readers by surprise is who wrote the book’s foreword; none other than 13-time NBA Champion (11 as a coach, two as a player) Phil Jackson. “I talked to Phil and went out and spent three days with him in Montana and we hit it off a little bit,” Nurse said. “He was kind of my mentor back in the 90s, he didn’t know it, and I never met him until two summers ago, but he was gracious enough to write it and it was very kind of him.”
Nurse really had no idea what to expect or how long their meeting would be, he just knew he would fly out to Montana and get the opportunity to chat with Jackson. “I didn’t really know if we were going for a cup of coffee or if I was staying or what we were really doing”
They would ultimately have three-day coaching retreat. Nurse and Jackson would spend time doing a variety of things including talking through coaching philosophy. Nurse goes further into this once in a lifetime trip in his brand new book, Rapture. As we all know, Nick Nurse would go on to take the Raptors to their first ever NBA championship in his first season as a head coach less than a year after this retreat. It goes to show that the trip to see Phil Jackson got him off on the right foot and set him up for success.