By the time Phil Jackson signs with the Knicks it feels like Ted Mosby will have met the mother of his children. Finally.
Pretty much every source in the universe says a deal is close, that includes Ramona Shelburne and Chris Broussard of ESPN.
Todd Musburger, Jackson’s Chicago-based agent, is in Los Angeles to finalize the contract with Jackson and Knicks officials, according to sources. Jackson’s contract is expected to pay him $12 million a year, sources said.
Madison Square Garden officials have been making plans for a news conference early next week in New York, sources said.
There is nothing new here, just a little bit more of a timeline. If it’s not Friday it could be Saturday. Or Sunday. Jackson works on his own timeline.
There was buzz in Los Angeles that as this dragged out the Lakers had tried to start talks with Jackson and his representatives. Shelburne says that is not true. Here’s the real problem with Jackson taking over in Los Angeles — Jim Buss has that job, he loves the Lakers and he is not giving it up. What the Knicks are giving Jackson, in addition to the $12 million a year, is power to change the Knicks organization. (Or, at least that’s what he thinks he is getting, we’ll see how Jackson and Knicks’ owner James Dolan are getting along in 18 months. But that’s another story.) The Lakers will not give him that power. Right now there is an uneasy truce between Jim and Jeanie Buss and Jackson — who is engaged to Jeanie — would tip that balance. It’s not happening. Not now anyway, no matter what Kobe Bryant or Magic Johnson or anyone else thinks.
Jackson has a lot of work to do in New York, which starts with the question of whether or not they should try to keep Carmelo Anthony this summer when he opts out of free agency? If so, at what price?
Sounds like we can start asking Jackson, and he can start dodging the questions, early next week.