Jackson introduced as president of Knicks

Tue Mar 18, 2014 3:03pm EDT
 
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By Larry Fine

NEW YORK (Reuters) - Phil Jackson was officially named president of the New York Knicks on Tuesday in a move the National Basketball Association team hopes will help restore a winning culture to the franchise.

Jackson, a link to the Knicks' glory days as a defensive-minded role player on teams that won two NBA titles in the early 1970s, went on to win a record 11 NBA titles as a head coach - six with the Chicago Bulls and five with the Los Angeles Lakers.

Knicks owner James Dolan announced the appointment at packed news conference at Madison Square Garden, the team's home arena, following a week of speculation that Jackson would take over in charge of the team's basketball operations.

"There is only one Phil Jackson, and he is synonymous with winning basketball teams," Dolan said.

"His history of success in the NBA is unrivaled, and he is the ideal executive to lead our team and develop short and long term plans that build a successful franchise and result in an NBA championship."

Jackson, 68, who retired from coaching in 2011, was greeted at the news conference by former teammates Walt Frazier and Dick Barnett, while to his right, in the window of the Knicks merchandising store in the Garden lobby, racks were lined with replicas of his old No. 18 on throwback gray Knicks T-shirts.

"I started my career as a Knick, and know what it feels like to win in this great city," Jackson said.

"I take the task of helping to deliver a winning team to our fans seriously, and look forward to combining my vision of the game with Steve Mills' abilities as a general manager."   Continued...

 
Phil Jackson poses during a news conference announcing him as the team president of the New York Knicks basketball team at Madison Square Gardens in New York March 18, 2014.REUTERS/Shannon Stapleton