Hall-of-famer Scottie Pippen knows Phil Jackson as well as anyone, as the duo teamed up to win six championships in nine seasons with Jackson at the helm and the unstoppable duo of Michael Jordan and Pippen on the floor. While appearing on ESPN’s The Jump. the 51-year-old was honestly critical of the job Jackson has done in the Big Apple as the New York Knicks’ team president.
Pippen even came to the defense of how well Carmelo Anthony has handled the toxic environment instilled by Jackson, as the All-Star forward, head coach and team president seem to be on different pages. The Knicks will miss the playoffs for a fourth consecutive season.
The former Chicago Bulls All-Star said, “I just think he hasn’t put the right pieces on the floor. I give a lot of credit to Carmelo, who has been very professional in getting through this 82-game season, and now he’s being benched to some degree, they’ve taken a lot of his minutes away.”
Pippen then continued to state that Knicks fans might see a brighter future if Jackson was out of the picture. “There has not been any upside to think that the New York Knicks were gonna be a contender, and I just feel bad for Carmelo having to go through this and having to deal with it, but he got a great contract,” he said. “I’m sure the fans will love to see Carmelo in New York and Phil out.”
Jackson signed a five-year $60 million contract with an opt out clause after 2017 with the Knicks in May 2014 and things have not gone as planned. Pippen even admitted that he believes team owner James Dolan should push Jackson out of NYC, which Dolan said he wouldn’t do because he wants to honor the five-year deal.
Will Jackson outlast Anthony in New York?