Phil Jackson: 'No structure, discipline' with NBA offenses

ESPN logo
Tuesday, June 23, 2015

New York Knicks president Phil Jackson isn't a fan of the way the game is being played these days, and he used the NBA's biggest star -- LeBron James -- as an example of exactly what's wrong.

Jackson, in an interview with Bleacher Report from May that was published Monday, said the current "individualized" style of the NBA isn't disciplined and -- even more so -- just isn't pleasing to the eye.

"When I watch some of these playoff games, and I look at what's being run out there, as what people call an offense, it's really quite remarkable to see how far our game has fallen from a team game," Jackson told Bleacher Report. "Four guys stand around watching one guy dribble a basketball.

"I watch LeBron James, for example. He might [travel] every other time he catches the basketball if he's off the ball. He catches the ball, moves both his feet. You see it happen all the time. There's no structure, there's no discipline, there's no 'How do we play this game' type of attitude. And it goes all the way through the game. To the point where now guys don't screen -- they push guys off with their hands."

Jackson, who has 13 NBA titles to his credit -- 11 as a coach with the Chicago Bulls and Los Angeles Lakers and two as a player with the Knicks -- was just using James as an example. He said the problem is widespread as teams shun structured offenses in favor of constant pick-and-roll plays.

"The game actually has some beauty to it, and we've kind of taken some of that out of it to make it individualized," Jackson told Bleacher Report. "It's a lot of who we are as a country, individualized stuff.

"...It struck me: How can we get so far away from the real truth of what we're trying to do?"

Related Video