Monday , Nov , 13 , 2006 C.Y. Ellis

Phil Jackson Calls Out Greg Popovich

Phil Jackson Calls Out Greg Popovich

Oh, how the plot thickens. Apparently, Greg Popovich (a class act by all other accounts) is still complaining that Isiah Thomas and the New York management did his buddy Larry Brown wrong. Under the terms of the severance package, which big boss man David Stern oversaw, LB was given a cool $18.5 million to get out of town. While Pop is claiming that it’s crooked to give a guy half the bread you initially offered, I see it as money for nothing. I sit on my ass most of the day, and nobody’s paying me a cotdang thing for it. Count your blessings, Larry.

Phil Jackson, in a most un-Zen moment, decided it was time to weigh in with his thoughts, raising a legitimate point in asking why Coach Greg had nothing to say when Donald Sterling was treating contracts as if they weren’t worth the paper they were written on. Over to you, Jax.

"If [Brown’s settlement] was a concern to people, Popovich probably should have weighed in on Sterling about two or three coaches ago when he was breaking all their contracts. That was the time he should have been backing up coaches, not about a $40-million situation that ends up with $18 million. It’s about guys that were owed $500,000 or $600,000 who needed that kind of money."

Tell ‘em why you mad, Phil. While I dispute that the NBA coaches who were shafted really needed the cash (if the cheque you don’t get has five zeroes on it, you’re probably not starving), PJ is right: In the grand scale of management fucking their people over, this can be seen as a minor victory for the fired party. After a season such as the one he went to such lengths to ruin, most of New York would probably think a farewell payment of a penny would be a little generous for Larry Brown.

I hate to lower the tone (as if that’s possible), but I can’t be the only one who thinks that Phil looks like Colonel Sanders in the shot above. I didn’t see it at first, but the sudden urge for fried chicken led me to make the connection. There’s a marketing campaign in there.