Report: Mark Jackson made anti-gay comments about Warriors president, Jason Collins while coaching Golden State

Former Warriors coach Mark Jackson
Andrew D. Bernstein/NBAE via Getty Images
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Warriors owner Joe Lacob said former Golden State coach Mark Jackson “couldn’t get along with anybody else in the organization.”

Just how divisive was Jackson, whom Golden State fired in 2014?

Ethan Sherwood Strauss:

Jackson alienating other members of the organization – even an injured Festus Ezeli – has been explored. Religion was a throughline in the divide between Jackson and some in the franchise (though faith also united Jackson and some players).

The anti-gay comments are new territory publicly.

That’s not the right way to treat people, period. In a workplace, there are particular issues with talking that way.

For what it’s worth, Rick Welts credited Jackson last year with helping to change the Warriors’ culture. Jackson – who coached Golden State to its first consecutive playoffs in more than 20 years – was instrumental in getting the team onto a new course, especially defensively.

But Jackson’s successor, Steve Kerr, immediately elevated the Warriors into a dynasty and by doing so retroactively cast a negative light onto Jackson’s tenure. Likewise, Jackson’s own behavior on the job has aged poorly.

People can change. Jackson – who’s currently a color commentator for ESPN/ABC – shouldn’t be banished from society.

But entrusting him to coach another team, to unite a roster, to represent a team publicly, to meet a billion-dollar company’s HR standards (even as loosely as they’re applied to multi-million-dollar-salaried employees)? A clearer picture is emerging of why Jackson hasn’t landed another coaching job since Golden State fired him.