Los Angeles, Ca — Phil Jackson and Derek Fisher won five NBA championships when the former coached the latter in Los Angeles. Now, the two hope their latest partnership will achieve great things in New York.
The New York Knicks on Tuesday introduced longtime NBA player Fisher as the team’s 26th head coach.
Fisher, 39, just wrapped up his NBA playing career, playing last season for the Oklahoma City Thunder. He replaces Mike Woodson, who was fired after the Knicks failed to make the playoffs this season.
Jackson, the Knicks’ new president, made Fisher his first coaching hire. Though this will be Fisher’s first head coaching job at any level, Jackson said Fisher was the perfect choice, in part because of their shared experiences in Los Angeles.
“He’s learned under some of the best coaches,” Jackson told reporters Tuesday morning — naming Don Nelson, Jerry Sloan and Scott Brooks but leaving out himself.
Jackson “obviously left himself off the list,” Fisher said.
Jackson the coach and Fisher the guard helped the Lakers to championships in 2000, 2001, 2002, 2009 and 2010.
Fisher said that although this is his first attempt as coach, he has valuable experience in the game as a player and champion.
“That (being a champion) I have experience in, and that is an experience I plan on sharing” with the Knicks’ players, Fisher said.