By Jonas Terrado
The New York Knicks are so dysfunctional these days that there seems to be no quick fix in the problem. But one American writer suggested that the solution could be solved by none other than the PBA’s winningest coach – Tim Cone.
It may sound absurd but Roland Lazenby believes that hiring Cone on the Knicks organization could help the dilemma of team president Phil Jackson with regards to the players’ rebelling against the Triangle Offense which he implemented with great success.
Lazenby, who has written numerous NBA-related books including “Michael Jordan: The Life” and most recently “Showboat: The Life of Kobe Bryant”, endorsed Cone during a series of tweets that came after the Knicks ended their season with a 31-51 record.
The Knicks missed the playoffs for the fourth straight season and in their first year under coach Jeff Hornacek after a series of heartbreaking defeats and off-court drama marred by Jackson’s series of public tirades on superstar forward Carmelo Anthony.
“Phil (Jackson) would be smart to bring @manilacone (Cone’s Twitter account) to NY. He’s the ultimate triangle coach in the world today. @PhilJackson11 (Jackson’s username) should hire Coach Cone,” Lazenby said through his account @lazenby.
“Tex Winter (the architect of the Triangle Offense and a former Jackson assistant) would tell @PhilJackson11 that @manilacone would bring to the NYK a deep understanding of triangle and much experience it.”
Lazenby later added: “The great @manilacone is a triangle/defense expert who would contribute much to the NYK staff as an assistant He, Horny (Hornacek) + Phil should talk.”
Though flattered, Cone said he is content at where is at right now, coaching Barangay Ginebra San Miguel in the PBA.
“Have to admit, that would be fun. Can’t imagine how much I would learn from him, but I love the PBA. There’s nothing quite like it. Content,” Cone said.
There’s no question that Cone is a disciple of the Triangle ever since he started coaching with Alaska in 1989. The system enabled the American mentor to lead the Milkmen to 13 championships, including a historic grand slam in 1996.
He later won a second triple crown in 2014, this with the San Mig Super Coffee Mixers (now-Star Hotshots) before ending Ginebra’s eight-year title drought in last year’s Governors’ Cup.
While he has somewhat implemented a more liberalized system at Ginebra, as attributed by his players, Cone stressed that he is still using the philosophy of the Triangle Offense.
The idea of having Cone joine the Zen Master (Jackson’s nickname) in the Big Apple may be a fantasy at best, Lazenby’s suggestion further solidify Cone’s status as perhaps the country’s best coach.