Carmelo Anthony excuses Phil Jackson's absence
Phil Jackson has won nearly 63 percent of his games since becoming Knicks president two weeks ago. His attendance record is not nearly as good though.
Jackson has been to only two of the eight games the Knicks have played since he took over their basketball department: a win over Indiana at the Garden and a 31-point loss at the Lakers. Jackson told a reporter during the game in Los Angeles that the Knicks' performance was "awful."
Some believe Jackson, who is getting paid $12 million a year, should be with the Knicks as much as possible to get to know the players and staff and help them in any way he can as they try to make their playoff push. But Carmelo Anthony is not one of them.
"Right now it's about us," Anthony said Monday night after the Knicks beat the Jazz in Salt Lake City. "I don't think it's about anything he's going to do or change right now. It's about what we do on the basketball court.
"He's smart. He knows what he's doing. He's been in this situation before with fighting for spots and trying to win basketball games. So he knows what to expect, and now he's on the outside looking in. I guess he's giving us our space. We're not really concerned about that."
Jackson is expected to attend tonight's game against the Nets at the Garden.
Jackson has some health issues that may have kept him in Los Angeles during the Knicks' recently concluded five-game West Coast trip. There's also been speculation that he's keeping a low profile to avoid being a distraction.
"I don't think he's a distraction," Anthony said. "But right now it's about us. I don't think it's about anything he's going to do or change right now. It's about what we do on the basketball court."