The Student News Site of Claudia Taylor Johnson High School

My Jag News

The Student News Site of Claudia Taylor Johnson High School

My Jag News

The Student News Site of Claudia Taylor Johnson High School

My Jag News

PHOTOS OF THE WEEK
PHOTOS OF THE WEEK
Apr 15, 2024

The Zen Master’s reign has come to an end

Zachary Cohen | Sports Editor

The coaching career of one of, if not the, greatest coaches in the history of basketball has come to an end, as Phil Jackson is retiring from coaching. One of the most legendary coaches to ever step on the hard wood of a basketball court will no longer be seen on the sidelines. At the beginning of the season, Jackson said this would be his last season regardless of how the season turned out. The Los Angeles Lakers loss to the Mavericks in the 2nd round of the NBA Playoffs did just that.

Phil Jackson started his coaching career in 1989 as coach of the Chicago Bulls. It didn’t take Jackson long to begin his winning ways, behind one of the greatest players ever, Michael Jordan, he acquired his first NBA Title in the 1991 season. Jackson wasn’t satisfied with just one title, as he led the Bulls to an NBA Championship in each of the next 3 years.

After a three year drought of championships, he led the Bulls to another 3-peat, again with Michael Jordan leading the team. After his sixth title, Jackson retired and vowed to never coach again. After a one year absence from coaching, the then 53 year old coach returned to the game to coach on of the most historical teams in league history. Led by one of the best duos the league has ever seen, Kobe Bryant and Shaquille O’Neal, Jackson led the Los Angeles Lakers to an NBA Title in his first year with the team. Jackson was at it, doing only as he knew how; winning 3 consecutive NBA Championships for the third time in his coaching career, and the first time in franchise history.

After losing in the 2004 NBA Finals, Jackson retired for the second time. However, three days shy of the year to the day that Jackson retired, the Lakers rehired him, to come back and coach the Lakers. Battling through adversity, and controversy, including a sexual assault allegations against his star player, Kobe Bryant, the Lakers went seven years without tasting championship gold. That drought came to an end when in the 2009 NBA Finals against the Orlando Magic, Jackson coached the Lakers to their sixteenth NBA title in franchise history. The victory also marked Jacksons’ tenth NBA Title, a new NBA coaching record. The following year, behind Finals MVP Kobe Bryant, Jackson won his eleventh NBA Championship by beating the Boston Celtics in a grueling sseven game series.

Known as “The Zen Master” because of his very complex and strategic game plan that were foreseen as him playing “mind games” with opponents, Phil Jackson will go down as the winningest coach in NBA history. Although he experienced some success as a player, winning 2 NBA Titles as a member of the New York Knicks, Jackson will be remembered as one of the greatest coaches to ever hold a clipboard by most. As a coach, he is a 6 time Eastern Conference Champion, a 7 time Western Conference Champion, an 11 time NBA Champion, and was named NBA Coach of the Year in 1996. If his stats don’t speak loud enough, without Jackson, who knows how the careers of Kobe Bryant and Michael Jordan really would have turned out.

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The Zen Master’s reign has come to an end