NBA coaching legend and New York Knicks’ president, Phil Jackson, spoke to Charley Rosen of Today’s Fastbreak back in February, covering several subjects, including the topic of this summer’s then-upcoming free agency.
The Knicks have now had an extremely busy summer, picking up Derrick Rose, Joakim Noah, Brandon Jennings and Courtney Lee to join forces with faces of the franchise, Carmelo Anthony and Latvian NBA sophomore, Kristaps Porzingis.
After finding themselves out of the race in the NBA draft due to previous trades, Jackson made it abundantly clear at the time that the Knicks would make free agency a top priority this offseason.
“We spent a lot of time trying to get something done, but there was no way I was going to deal our 2018 first-round pick,” Jackson said. “It was clear all along that the free-agent market was the main way we could keep progressing.”
Jackson went on to list the team’s needs and for many, it will bring further validation to the trades they went on to make this summer.
“One of our several needs will be to sign a guard who can penetrate and attack the basket in early offense and screen-roll situations. Whomever we sign also has to avoid over-handling the ball and be able to get us into our offense if we can’t run ourselves into an easy shot. I’ve always liked big guards…6-4, 6-5, around there. That’s because having someone that big reduces the disadvantages of having to switch on high screens.”
Derrick Rose, though listed at 6-3, certainly fits that bill. He has a strong physique and possesses the ability to attack the basket, especially when healthy.
Overall, it seems as though Jackson achieved the goals he set out for the organization, and fans hope that the experiment works.