And who can blame the Nets?
Jackson brings instant credibility to any franchise. The man owned the 1990s and 2000s, winning so many rings he can't even fit them on both hands. In his nearly quarter-century coaching career, Jackson coached the biggest stars in the game—Michael Jordan and Scottie Pippen in Chicago and Kobe Bryant and Shaquille O'Neal in Los Angeles.
Despite Jackson's winning formula and no-nonsense approach, Brooklyn isn't the place for him to make a return.
It never will be.
Not for a guy who's refused to settle for anything but the best in his career.
In both Chicago and L.A., Jackson was privileged to coach the top star in the game. Sure, it probably made things a lot easier when he could turn and tell His Airness to take the game-winner. It doesn't take a whole lot of coaching genius to figure out that Kobe should take the final shot in crunch time.
So who would Jackson turn to in Brooklyn? Deron Williams.
Sorry, folks. Williams might be a three-time All-Star and Olympic champion, but he shouldn't even be mentioned in the same breath as Kobe or MJ.
In fact, Williams isn't even a star anymore—at least not in 2012. The Nets' best player is scoring just 16.6 points per game and dishing out just 7.8 assists, while nailing just 40 percent of his field-goal attempts and shooting a shade under 30 percent from downtown.
Now of course, Williams plays a different position than Kobe or Jordan, but that's the point: Phil Jackson has never featured a point guard in his offense.
In Chicago, Jackson relied on a rotation of Ron Harper and Steve Kerr, but his offense was built around Jordan. In L.A., the story was the same; Kobe and Shaq made the triangle offense an everyday term, not whomever Jackson trotted out at point guard.
This isn't a knock on Williams' talent.
The guy is still one of the best at his position, but he doesn't get a ton of help from his supporting cast.
Joe Johnson has always been one of the overrated players in the league. He carried the load on some bad Atlanta Hawks teams before seeing his scoring average decline every year since the '06-'07 season.
Gerald Wallace still plays with incredible effort, but does Jackson really want a small forward averaging 10.5 points per game on 42.6 percent shooting?
Brooklyn may need a guy like Phil Jackson, but he doesn't need the Nets.
A coach of his stature can't simply be thrust into any situation and turn it into gold. He needs the right guys for his system, and the Nets don't offer that.
So sorry, Brooklyn.
You best keep on shopping.
Like the new article format? Send us feedback!