Phil Jackson, the former assistant traversal coach for the Chicago Bulls and Los Angeles Lakers, has come under fire for making a statement many say reveals potential racism.
Phil has come under fire in the past for making racially insensitive comments about LeBron James and his business associates. Phil referred to LeBron’s business partner as his “posse.” According to Media Take Out, the group he was speaking of included Rich Paul — one of the top sports agents in the world.
Last year Scottie Pippen, who played under Phil for years, called him a “racist”.
Yesterday, during an interview, Phil claimed that he no longer watches the NBA, all because the league has decided to support black people who have been murdered by police in the United States.
According to Phil, supporting murder victims is “political” and should have no place in sport. In protest, he no longer watches basketball.
Phil is an American former professional basketball player, coach, and manager. As a power forward, Jackson played 12 seasons in the NBA, winning 1970 and 1973 NBA championships with the New York Knicks. Jackson was the head coach of the Chicago Bulls from 1989 to 1998 and led them to six NBA championships. He then coached the Los Angeles Lakers from 1999 to 2004 and again from 2005 to 2011; The team won five championship titles under his leadership. Jackson’s 11 NBA coaching titles surpassed Red Auerbach’s previous record of nine.
Jackson is known for his use of Tex Winter’s offense of a triangle, as well as a holistic approach to coaching that was influenced by Eastern philosophy, earning him the nickname “Zen Master”. Jackson cited Robert Pirsig’s book “Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance” as one of the most important guiding principles in his life. He also employed Native American spiritual practices as documented in his book Sacred Hoops. He is the author of several candid books about his teams and basketball strategies. Jackson was inducted into the Basketball Hall of Fame in 2007.
In 1996, as part of the NBA’s 50th anniversary celebrations, Jackson was named one of the 10 greatest coaches in league history