While I would have loved it even more if Mark Jackson had been named head coach of my beloved Knicks, Fisher was not a bad Plan B.
Fisher is well-respected around the NBA, having won five titles with the Los Angeles Lakers. Plus Kobe Bryant is one of Fisher’s biggest fans, having come into the league around the same time and growing up in the Lakers’ organization together. And if Kobe respects you and thinks you are hot stuff, you will have a chance in ANY locker room. I think Carmelo Anthony would respect Fisher enough to listen to him.
I know there are some people who would prefer Steve Kerr, Knicks President of Basketball Operations Phil Jackson’s first choice. However as stated earlier, Fisher has more respect league-wide than Kerr. Plus Kerr to me seems like TOO nice of a guy to command a locker room. Do y’all think Carmelo would respect and play hard for someone like that?
This is a pivotal off-season for Jackson. He knows he needs a new head coach who will command enough respect to keep Carmelo from leaving the Knicks, and Fisher would do just that.
Again, I would have loved it a lot more if Phil Jackson would have hired Mark Jackson.
I think that Mark is a proven winner, having turned the once sad-sack Golden State Warriors into a back-to-back playoff team that is on the rise. I also think that given Mark is a native son of New York City (he went to St. John’s and was drafted by the Knicks), it would have been a homecoming that would’ve given all of us Knicks fans something to shout about.
In short, it made too much sense to hire Mark.
However, I understand that Phil prefers someone with whom he has coached and that is his right. Fisher played for and helped win Jackson five of his 11 NBA titles. Fisher is someone that Jackson could entrust to run the vaunted Triangle offense. Plus Jackson could mentor Fisher a la Pat Riley and Erik Spoelstra.
As I said earlier, I – and most of my fellow Knicks fans – am optimistic, but a bit cautious. Only time will tell how Fisher will do as a first-time head coach in Gotham.