The Los Angeles Lakers met with Phil Jackson on Saturday to talk about the vacant head coaching position. Jackson expressed interest in signing on for a third stint with the team if the Lakers were willing to agree to his terms.
After the 1-4 start and firing of Mike Brown as a result, the Lakers’ front office has been backed into a corner with Jackson having a lot of leverage in these discussions. With the team going all-in on a championship run this season and for perhaps the next few years if Dwight Howard signs long-term, the storied franchise is doing everything within its power to sign Jackson and get back on track as soon as possible.
With an endorsement from Kobe Bryant and Howard’s desire to play for Jackson, the Zen Master is the ideal choice with all other candidates taking a backseat to the 11-time NBA champion.
At this point in time, Jackson is still undecided about making his return to the Lakers and is taking Sunday to mull it over. A decision from Jackson is expected tomorrow according to Chris Broussard of ESPN The Magazine:
Jackson was expected to give the Lakers his answer Monday, a source said.
“He’s intrigued by the job but not completely sure it’s the right thing to do,” the source said.
As of right now, the Lakers are only seriously considering hiring Jackson to take over for Brown. Jackson is the only candidate that has had a face-to-face meeting with the team as all others like Mike D’Antoni and Mike Dunleavy have only been interviewed over the phone thus far.
It appears to be a foregone conclusion that the Lakers’ front office will abide by Jackson’s conditions and hire him for a third time. Although Jackson seems destined to make his comeback, anything can happen from now until he makes his final decision on Monday.