Rick Fox thinks Phil Jackson should coach the Knicks. But Fox also said he would coach them if the Knicks' president asked him to do it.
Fox played for Jackson with the Lakers and was part of three championship teams. When he was asked during an interview with Bloomberg Television if he would be interested in the Lakers' vacancy, he quickly shifted the conversation to the Knicks.
"There are a number of open jobs," Fox said. "I've been looking and in conversations with Phil Jackson, in supporting his vision for the Knicks. I love the Lakers, obviously. They're a little unsure which direction they want to go in right now. I think you'll probably get a quicker answer out of New York.
"I'm hoping -- I keep saying to Phil Jackson -- he needs to coach the team. He's the best guy for it. He's the holy grail of coaches. If he needed my support in some way, it'd be hard to turn him down. Or if he needed me to step in and do the job myself, I'd definitely welcome that.''
Jackson is expected to hire someone he has worked with previously and who has a complete understanding of the triangle offense. Both are true of Fox, who played five years for Jackson.
Currently an analyst for NBA TV, Fox has never coached. But that doesn't appear to be a deterrent for Jackson in his search.
His top choice was Steve Kerr, who ultimately took the Golden State Warriors' job. Thunder guard Derek Fisher has emerged as the leading candidate, but he will not be available until Oklahoma City's season's is over. The Thunder trails the Spurs two games to none in the Western Conference finals.
Neither Kerr nor Fisher has coached before.
Other possibilities include Kurt Rambis, Jim Cleamons, Bill Cartwright and Luke Walton. All have played for or coached with Jackson in Chicago or Los Angeles.
Veteran coach Mike Dunleavy met with Jackson last week, but Dunleavy acknowledged he was "the outside guy" to those who have played or coached in Jackson's system.
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