Rumors continue to swirl around 13-time NBA Champion Phil Jackson‘s return to the NBA. While recent reports have linked him to the Toronto Raptors thanks to his relationship with Tim Leiweke, ESPN’s Marc Stein is reporting that Jackson is waiting for the Sacramento Kings situation to play out before going any further.
ESPN.com reported recently that Jackson has “hit it off” with Chris Hansen, who leads the Seattle consortium that on Friday upped the valuation of its offer to buy the Kings to $625 million. It has been widely presumed in front-office circles that Hansen wants to install Jackson as the team president of the new Sonics if they can successful complete the purchase of the Kings they’ve been chasing since January.
The NBA is scheduled to meet on May 15th in Dallas to give their final decision on the Kings’ fate and it remains to be seen how they will react to the Seattle group’s most recent bid, assuming they react at all – something they haven’t done publicly with the initial bid increase a few weeks prior.
Jackson has made no secret of his desire to handle basketball operations (or his desire to be paid handsomely to do so) and few situations present themselves better than the one which could potentially be available in Seattle. Still, it’s hard to envision Jackson, who has a longtime relationship with Los Angeles Lakers Vice President Jeanie Buss, working for a rival – and that’s assuming that the Kings are somehow relocated to Seattle, something that the NBA’s Board of Governors has already shot down.