Tuesday, June 7, 2011

Mark Jackson; Warriors Head Coach

New Warriors Advanced Statistics Guy
The boo birds are all over the internets today regarding the hiring of Mark "I've Never Coached Before" Jackson. But before we get into it too much, let's throw out some randumb Mark Jackson facts via Wikipedia:
  • Did you know that Mark Jackson's brother was the 500 lb baller Escalade of the And 1 Tour?  RIP Escalade.
  • Did you know that there's a rule named after Mark Jackson?  Just Google "Mark Jackson Rule" and be amazed.
  • Did you know that Mark Jackson is half Dominican? That's pretty cool.
  • Did you know that Mark Jackson played at St. Johns with Chris Mullin?  There's some Dubs ties right there.
  • Did you know that Mark Jackson played for 5 Hall of Fame coaches during his playing career (Lou Carnesecca, Lenny Wilkens, Jerry Sloan, Pat Riley and Larry Brown). Me neither.
  • Doesn't Mark Jackson look a lot like Doc Rivers?
  • I can't wait for Warrior Fans to start tracking the Jackson-isms that he spits out at press conferences throughout his tenure. 
I know Jackson is annoying in the announcer’s chair.  But when you listen to other coaches during the broadcasts in the huddles and locker room, these guys aren’t geniuses.  This tells me that it doesn’t take a whole lot of brain power to communicate to these guys.  Heck, Phil Jackson dumbed it down to the Nth degree when trying to get Lamar Odumb to catch a sugar high and play well.  Only Doc seems to successfully speak on a high level to his squad as evident in the awesome “The Association” series.

Going from a coach who made one shot while at Indiana to one who made 14 playoffs during his playing days is a huge upgrade.  Players respect coaches who have experience in The Association and Jackson has plenty of it. Heck, all the players probably think he’s great as an announcer, too.

Lacob "only" gave him $2mil/year for 3 years which had to factor into it (Nellie was making $6mil/year).  Since this is his first gig Lacob was able to pay him accordingly.

Read the Tim Kawakami blog which has a transcript of Jerry West.  West seems to like Jackson…a lot.  That same blog talks a lot about Mike Malone who is going to join Jackson GSW as an assistant.  Malone was on Monty William’s staff in NOLA and is some sort of defensive guru a-la Tom  Thibodeau and helped the Chris Paul’s become one of the best defensive teams in the league.  West was fired up about getting this guy. Plus, Malone provides a good option if Mark Jackson ever requires canning.

Warriors GM Larry Riley did say that "he's going to have some real strengths in communicating with players" and this seems to be a very strong theme of Lacob's hires: Bob Meyers was a successful agent before becoming Assistant GM, Jerry West is the frigging logo, and now Mark Jackson who is probably friendly with 90% of the players that actually matter in The Association.

Now let's look at the other options The Warriors had. I don’t like JVG.  He only cares about defense and slowing the game down limiting possessions.  The Knicks and Rockets of the past were turrible to watch even though they won.  He wouldn’t have fit the ID of the Dubs and even if he was hired and changed them around to be defensive focused, it would have sucked kinda.

And I’m still laughing that the Lakers got Mike Brown.  This dude is such a scapegoat and I'm not sure it is possible to wipe the Cleveland stink off of him.  I can't wait to see how him and Kobe get along.

Some people out there would have preferred San Antonio Assistant Tom Budenholzer or Mavs Assistant Dwane Casey.  Or perhaps Lawrence Frank.  The line of tried-and-failed coaches on Association Team benches is large.

The Warriors now have a direction, a focus.  It's on personality, being direct with the fans and media, and it's on defense. This defensive focus points to the Monta being shipped out for a true SG defensive stopper in Iggy being a possibility.  I’m not sure if I like that trade (because Iguodola speaks with a lisp) but I wouldn’t be pissed if it went down.  But the Sixers are being sold currently so this may hold up the potential swap.

Anyway, Warriors dot com has some solid audio and video HERE

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