BOSTON (CBS) — Phil Jackson and the New York Knicks are expected to announce on Wednesday that they are mutually parting ways, according to a report by The Vertical’s Adrian Wojnarowski.
Jackson was hired in 2014 to take over the Knicks’ basketball operations. The Knicks went 80-166 (.325) in three full seasons under Jackson as team president. Jackson notably drafted Latvian big man Kristaps Porzingis with the fourth overall pick in the 2015 NBA Draft.
The Celtics had recently been heavily involved in rampant trade rumors with the Knicks regarding Porzingis ahead of the 2017 NBA Draft. The Celtics ultimately drafted forward Jayson Tatum third overall while the Knicks drafted Belgian guard Frank Ntilikina eighth. Jackson confirmed that the Knicks were getting calls on Porzingis, while also expressing disappointment that he had skipped his exit interview.
It’s unclear who in the Knicks organization really wanted to trade Porzingis to the Celtics or elsewhere, or whether it factored into the team and Jackson’s decision to part ways.
Wojnarowski added that Knicks owner James Dolan was “weighing Jackson’s future role running the franchise” and had become “increasingly concerned about Jackson’s fitness for the job.” The two sides reportedly discussed parting ways on Tuesday.
Considering the Celtics’ reported plans to make moves to acquire both Gordon Hayward and Paul George, it’s unclear whether they would try to resume Porzingis trade talks with remaining Knicks management.