Former NBA three-point specialist and television analyst Steve Kerr was named the new head coach of the Golden State Warriors on May 14, despite verbally committing to take over coaching duties of the New York Knicks one day earlier.
Knicks president Phil Jackson met with the media on Friday. He mentioned why he believes Kerr wound up going with the Warriors gig over making “The Big Apple” his home, via Chris Herring of the Wall Street Journal.
The Warriors finished the regular season with a 51-31 record before being bounced out of the first round of the NBA playoffs by Blake Griffin and the Los Angeles Clippers. In a relatively weak Eastern Conference, the Knicks couldn’t muster up enough wins to qualify for the postseason, going 37-45 and finishing third in the Atlantic division.
The future of Carmelo Anthony in a Knicks uniform is questionable at best, while the lack of draft picks and cap room for the foreseeable future adds up to a very bleak outlook. On the other side of things, Golden State has one of the most prolific shooting tandems in NBA history with Stephen Curry and Klay Thompson, an All-Star power forward in David Lee and young developing pieces off the bench in Harrison Barnes and Draymond Green.
Kerr played under Jackson as a member of three championship teams in Chicago. Per ESPN, Kerr was apparently in “too deep” during his negotiations with the Knicks, so it was surprising to see him ultimately end up with the Warriors.
Based on talent alone, Kerr made the right decision. Jackson would agree.