The official student newspaper of University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire since 1923.

The Spectator

The official student newspaper of University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire since 1923.

The Spectator

The official student newspaper of University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire since 1923.

The Spectator

    Rosenberry Crunch: The end for Jackson?

    The NBA playoffs can be really exciting. Maybe you hate the regular season, but I think come playoff time, it is usually quite good. Close games! Defense is actually played! Caring!

    However, it can also be super ugly, too.

    A good example of the ugly was the final game of the Mavericks vs. Lakers series. This is especially true for the final game. The Lakers lost by 36 points and at no point were they in the game. Bynum and Odom had a pair of ridiculous fouls that got them tossed within 45 seconds of each other. Great basketball, eh?

    Actually, all four games were pretty bad … at least if you are a Lakers fan. Thankfully I am not. I only enjoy pristine, perfect basketball, which is how the Bucks play, for example.

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    Well, all lying aside, I may not like the Lakers, but I do like coach Phil Jackson and I’m disappointed that he may end his career on that note.

    I have liked Jackson for a long time. This started when I read his book “Sacred Hoops” a while back. It was mainly a recount of his playing days on the Knicks and his coaching years with the Bulls, but it also discussed some of his coaching philosophies as well.

    I respect him greatly as a coach, too. There’s always the question of if it was mainly his great players that lead to his success or that he lead those players to be great. I think that it is a little bit of both — you need coaches and players to win games. Maybe he plays too many head games for some people, but I believe he is a great motivator and generally a good player’s coach.

    I understand that he clashed with Bryant and called him “uncoachable” in a book, but that seemed to be the exception. He got Dennis Rodman to play for him for heaven’s sake. That’s like getting an Uruk-hai to play for you. I guess that would make Jackson Saruman … but, you know, a good version. OK, so a Uruk-hai-controlling Gandalf.

    Anyway, even though he said that he is retiring, some aren’t buying it. He has claimed before that he never wanted to coach again.

    Therefore some believe that he will come back again. I’m not sure what he will do, but I’m hoping that he stays retired despite that barf-inducing four games against the Mavs.

    Sure, you want to end on a high note, but that desire can become overwhelming and pathetic. Take a look at any boxer. George Foreman I think has retired 63 times so far. I think he believes that after a fight it’s a requirement to retire.

    Maybe some of you have heard of Brett Favre, too.

    The most apt example is, of course, Michael Jordan, who won six championships with Jackson. Jordan of course ended on a high note. In fact, the highest note that can be reached.

    Unfortunately, MJ had to come back. He couldn’t live without basketball and decided to return to play for the Wizards and it was awful. He still could play, but it was not the same.

    If he wanted to come back, he should have just made Space Jam 2 because that would have been awesome.

    This is exactly how I feel about Jackson.

    Yes, after the first time he retired, he won five of his 11 championships, but it’s unlikely that that’d happen again.

    It’s going to be pretty disappointing if he came back and coached a team like the Pistons, but honestly, it will be disappointing to me if he comes back at all.

    I say this knowing that he is only one year removed from a championship. This is precisely why he needs to step down from coaching.

    Maybe he still has the ability to grind out another season, but it doesn’t mean he should do it. He needs to learn from Jordan’s mistake and say no to more basketball.

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    Rosenberry Crunch: The end for Jackson?