Writer Charley Rosen describes himself as a “long-time friend and confidant” of Knicks president Phil Jackson. They coached and roomed together in the Continental Basketball Association decades ago. Since, they’ve collaborated on books and articles.
So, when Rosen wrote, “The only sure thing is that Carmelo Anthony has outlived his usefulness in New York,” Anthony took it as a shot from Jackson.
Frank Isola of the New York Daily News:
Rosen insists that unfair to him and Jackson.
Rosen at FanRag:
So, although I have often been called Phil’s mouthpiece by fans and some in the media, I have never consulted him about the content or general themes of any of the thousands of columns I’ve written for various sports web sites.
The only obvious exceptions being the interviews I conducted with him.
Although some of my opinions may be congruent with Phil’s, they are strictly my own. For better or for worse.
So, then, my views on Carmelo Anthony, for example, come from carefully watching and analyzing his play throughout his career.
I’m not in the business of parroting a party line, or of stroking players with whom I’ve had friendly contact.
As part of his Anthony critique, Rosen wrote, “It’s understood that he’d only accept being dealt to the Cavaliers or the Clippers.” Where did Rosen get that if not Jackson? Rosen invites questions by making statements like that without attribution.
Rosen’s history with Jackson also attracts scrutiny. So much of Rosen’s writing career has leaned on Jackson for exclusive access. He can’t have both that and the benefit of the doubt about his separation from Jackson. Even if Rosen wants to be objective, we all have biases. Rosen seems far too close to Jackson to evaluate him – and, by extension, the Knicks – properly. After all, when evaluating the team beyond Anthony, Rosen wrote:
PHIL JACKSON has pushed the right buttons