Frankly Frankel: April 16, 2016

16 Apr

Phil Jackson is too arrogant for his own good, the Warriors winning 73 games will mean nothing if Golden State doesn’t follow through with a championship, Kobe Bryant has a near perfect ending, and A-Rod stinks. It’s been awhile but it’s back.  This is Frankly Frankel on this Saturday, April 16, 2016.

  • Phil Jackson’s arrogance with the ridiculous “triangle offense” is nothing short of baffling.  We get it Phil.  You won 11 championships as a coach, two more as a player with the Knicks in the 1970s (the only two titles in Knicks franchise history).  You’re the Zen Master.  That doesn’t mean though you have to be so stubborn with one specific style of offense.
  • Eleven titles is nothing to sneeze at, but let’s be real.  Those championships had just as much to do with the fact Phil was coaching some of the greatest players who ever lived as it did with him being the coach.  Those Bulls’ teams that won six titles were led by the GOAT Michael Jordan, to go along with Hall of Famers Scottie Pippen and Dennis Rodman.  Then the Lakers’ teams that won five titles included names like Kobe Bryant, Shaq, and Pau Gasol.
  • These Knicks teams obviously don’t have any players who come close to equaling the talent of Phil’s championship past despite how phenomenal Carmelo Anthony thinks he is.  That’s not hard to see.
  • Still, whenever Phil speaks, all we hear about is the triangle and the fact he won 11 titles with it so that must mean no matter who’s playing for him, the triangle has to work. Nope.  Wrong.
  • If Phil really wants to succeed as an executive, he needs to learn to adjust and to surround himself with people who won’t answer him by saying “Yes Phil” to everything he says.
  • It appears Derek Fisher tried doing that and he got canned for it and it looks like Phil is leaning toward promoting the ultimate puppet in Kurt Rambis to be the full-time coach.  Sounds like a terrific idea!
  • A good start for Phil would be catering the offense to the types of players on the roster instead of forcing a “has-been” style of basketball down the Knicks’ organizations throats and maybe hiring someone who isn’t afraid to challenge the great Phil.  God forbid.
  • The Golden State Warriors just set the NBA record for most wins in one regular season with 73 and Kobe Bryant scored 60 points in his final career game.  Incredible.
  • It’s a true shame both games were both played at the exact same time, 10:30pm ET.
  • How is this allowed to happen?  The two most important regular season games in recent memory being played at a time when most people with standard jobs have to get up early and are in bed by that time??
  • Someone at the NBA should have stepped in and done something about this, something like starting one of the games at 8pm.  Something, anything different than what it was because I had to be up at 6am the next morning and couldn’t stay up.
  • Funny story about that actually.  I made sure to record the Warriors game before I went to sleep because I figured that game was the one that would be the intriguing one of the night and Kobe Bryant wouldn’t do anything too special that would be worth recording.
  • So I woke up at 6am, zoomed through the Warriors game without checking Twitter and soon realized the game was never close and Golden State breezed to 73.  No harm no foul right?  Wrong.  Very wrong.
  • When I checked Twitter, the first tweet I see reads something along the lines of “60!!!!!!”, and a tremendous sense of fear overwhelmed me.  Kobe Bryant did what?????  I literally wanted to cry.
  • Not only did I choose to record the wrong game, but I missed out on what will probably be the greatest sports moment of the year.  That my friends is not a good feeling.
  • Even if I re-watched every basket Kobe made, I will never get to feel the excitement of what it would have been like to see the game live.  Tremendous missed opportunity.
  • About Kobe’s actual performance, what is there to say?  Other than winning a championship, that’s as perfect a way to go out as I’ve seen since Jeter’s Yankee Stadium walk-off, and aside from Elway and Peyton’s last career games, I can’t think of anything that was better.
  • To score 60 on 50 shot attempts and to lead the Lakers to victory like that even though he shot the ball every time he touched it is simply unimaginable.  Kobe was so irrelevant the entire season in terms of his actual play on the court which made his final performance so unexpected and so epic.
  • What would have topped everything though was if he scored 60 and recorded zero assists.  That would have been the cherry on top.  Instead, Kobe disappointed the world by totaling four assists on the evening.  Way to go Mamba.
  • As for the Warriors, what a ride of a season it has been.  So many amazing performances, so many amazing storylines.
  • Perhaps the most unbelievable part about it all was the fact both Kobe’s performance and the Warriors’ wins record were both overshadowed by the Titans trading away the first overall pick in the NFL Draft to the Los Angeles Rams.
  • In an instant, the NFL stole all the thunder away from the NBA who thought there was no way Thursday’s news cycle would have consisted of anything other than Kobe and the Warriors.  And listening to the Rams and Titans say they held off on reporting the news until Thursday morning out of respect for Kobe.  Please.  If that’s what they really wanted to do, they would have waited until Friday.
  • I’m legitimately surprised the Rams decided to make this trade when they benefited in a big way by trading the second overall pick in the 2012 draft for a king’s ransom allowing the Redskins to draft Robert Griffin III.  We all know how that turned out.
  • The difference I think with Griffin though was he had the “can’t miss” tag attached to him.  I’m not sure you can say the same for Carson Wentz or Jared Goff which is why I probably would have held off.  KOD!
  • With the social media world the way it is today, I’m extremely curious to see how Golden State fairs in the playoffs because if you win 73 and don’t win the title, then how can you call a season like that a success??
  • This season for the Warriors reminds me of the 1998 Yankees’ season where they won a then record 114 regular season games and ended up winning the World Series, but going back and listening to players on that team talk about what that postseason was like, they all pretty much say it was the most pressure filled time they could ever remember.
  • I’ll just be blunt about it.  The Warriors essentially have to win the title if they want 73 to mean anything because you don’t win championships in the regular season, and I’m sure every player on Golden State would say exactly the same thing.  No one ever talks about the fact the 2001 Seattle Mariners won 116 regular season games because they lost to the Yankees in the ALCS.
  • Lastly, Alex Rodriguez has been beyond atrocious for the Yankees so far this season.  He’s hitting .120 with one home run and two RBIs on the young season.  He is acting his age and if he isn’t hitting, he has a negative value to the team.
  • I was initially concerned when A-Rod hit a home run in his first spring training at-bat and didn’t do anything else after that.  So far, my concerns have been completely valid.
  • That’s all for this edition of Frankly Frankel.  Be sure to tune in next time (I’m going to do everything in my power to make this a weekly occurrence again) and make sure to follow me on Twitter @lucasfrankel.
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