Phil Jackson predicted the playoffs for the Knicks in 2014-15, and he’s again drumming up postseason buzz for 2016-17.
Between, he was much more cautious.
The Knicks president didn’t make any bold proclamations entering last season. But, somewhat after the fact, he revealed his goal for the team.
Jackson in a March interview with Charley Rosen of Today’s Fastbreak that was published this month:
I’m also still hopeful that we can win the 35 games I had said was our goal before the season. That would be a vast improvement. More than twice the number that we won last year. We need to go 7-5 to get there.
“I know the guys don’t care about winning 35. They’re not marking it as their own goal. They just feel better about winning.
That’s a pretty pathetic aspiration – and the Knicks still didn’t meet it. They finished 32-50.
Jackson can say the players didn’t care about 35 wins, and they probably didn’t. It’s hard to see Carmelo Anthony appreciating aiming so low (though he might not resent it enough, which is anther issue).
But part of Jackson’s job is setting a tone for the organization. If he’s shooting for merely nearing mediocrity, that trickles down.
Jackson said entering the season he changed the Knicks’ culture. I’m not nearly as convinced.
Tired of NBA players dominating kids during the summer?
Here’s the video for you.
Celtics guard Avery Bradley loses in knockout – thanks to the smallest kid in the clip, who’s wearing a shirt way to big for him and a silly green hat.
Brian Robb of Celtics Hub:
Children in NBA player camps everywhere, you have been avenged.
Marc Gasol missed the final two months of last season and Olympics with a foot injury.
When will the Grizzlies center return?
Gasol in L’Esportiu, as translated by Jorge Sierra of HoopsHype:
On his foot injury:
“I’m really well and looking forward to starting (the season). I miss the competition, playing and enjoying basketball. All indications are that the foot is fine. I’ve practiced with the (Girona basketball club) juniors all I could, especially half-court sets.”
On almost making it to the Olympic Games:
“I was a couple of weeks away.”
After hurting his foot, it always seemed highly improbably Gasol would play in the Rio Games. But maybe he wasn’t that far off.
It’d be a huge boost to Memphis if Gasol is healthy as he sounds. The Grizzlies kept their window for winning open by re-signing Mike Conley and signing Chandler Parsons this summer, but Gasol is central to that. If healthy, Gasol is in the running for the NBA’s best center. Memphis went 30-22 with him and 12-18 without him last season (though other injuries contributed to the downfall).
Former Magic player Keith Appling was arrested in May.
Former Magic player Keith Appling was arrested in June.
Former Magic player Keith Appling was arrested in August.
Robert Allen of the Detroit Free Press:
Former Michigan State basketball player Keith Appling was arrested after a traffic stop Sunday, his third arrest since May, Detroit police said.
Appling, 24, was pulled over at about 9 p.m. on the city’s east side after driving away from a traffic stop, and a gun was found in a bag on the side of the road, according to an Associated Press report.
Bismack Biyombo might have left Toronto, but he didn’t escape jokes about his age from the Raptors.
Biyombo – according to official records, which have been disputed – turned 24 yesterday.
Unofficially? Kyle Lowry: