For Knicks fans, the eight scariest words in the English language are “Phil Jackson sits down for an exclusive interview.”
One day—one freakin’ day—before the NBA Draft, as fans grow ever more giddy with visions of future All-Stars, the team president just had to go and sit down with Al Trautwig, to assuage the terrified masses.
"I think we know what we're doing,” he reassured.
To Trautwig’s credit, he pulled few punches, asking Jackson point-blank if the team has been listening to offers for Kristaps Porzingis. Time for the prez to diffuse a potential PR nightmare, right? Right?
"We're getting calls. As much as we value Kristaps and what he's done for us, when a guy doesn't show up for an exit meeting, everybody starts speculating on the duration or movability from a club,” Jackson said.
"So we've been getting calls and we're listening, but we're not intrigued yet at this level. But as much as we love this guy, we have to do what's good for our club."
Jackson even went so far as to mention an asking price: two starters and a draft pick, at least. Jesus Christ, dude, the cameras are on. Oh, and Ramona Shelburne has reported that the Knicks have weighed offers from each team with a top-5 pick.
Phil couldn’t resist taking a swipe at his young big for skipping out on the exit interview, claiming he can’t remember a time when a player pulled such a stunt. Credit Ian Begley for calling out this bullshit.
FWIW: Phil said he didn't think a player ever skipped an exit meeting on him before. Shaq did in 2004, per this: https://t.co/0wQzKgC2Kz— Ian Begley (@IanBegley) June 22, 2017
Now watch Kristaps artfully brush aside the matter in an interview with ESPN:
Kristaps Porzingis on his decision to skip exit interviews with team president Phil Jackson. His story, coming Sunday morning on ESPN. pic.twitter.com/CeWXAcfMCd— E:60 (@E60) June 20, 2017
No, Kristaps shouldn’t have skipped the exit meeting. But he’s not stupid or petty enough to air the organization’s dirty laundry in public. Phil is a child.
Anyhoo, here’s the interview. Phil talks a bit about the draft, as well as his usual “Carmelo Anthony would be better off playing somewhere else” spiel. He mentioned that Melo prefers to stay, which...he has a no-trade clause, dude. You can’t trade him if he doesn’t want to go. Maybe ponder that for a minute or two.
“As much as we love @kporzee, we have to do what’s best for the #Knicks.” - Phil Jacksonhttps://t.co/rgWAgYAi2f #NBA— MSG Networks (@MSGNetworks) June 22, 2017
Stop talking, Phil.