Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Mark Jackson is a top candidate for the Timberwolves job with Kurt Rambis

By Anthony Caruso III

Mark Jackson is back at the top of an NBA's team wish list to be the head coach. Jackson and Lakers assistant Kurt Rambis are the top candidates for the Minnesota Timberwolves head coaching job. This is the third team that Jackson has been a top candidate for their head coaching this summer alone.

Jackson has been a candidate for the Detroit Pistons job after Michael Curry was fired. He was also a candidate for the Sacramento Kings job after Kenny Natt was fired. Jackson did not get those jobs – John Kuester went to Detroit and Paul Westphal went to Sacramento. Rambis was also considered for the Kings job, before declined the job, because he said the Kings were a rebuilding team.

Jackson has never been an assistant coach or head coach in the NBA. After his retirement from the NBA in 2004, he moved into the broadcast booth a few years later. He worked as an analyst for the New Jersey Nets on the YES Network for Marv Albert, but quit at the end of the 2008 season. He is currently an NBA analyst with ABC/ESPN, where he recently covered the 2008 and 2009 NBA Finals.

Even though Jackson has never coached in a game, he will bring valuable experience to any team that may hire him as a coach. Jackson is 13th in the all-time games played list with 1,296 games and is currently second overall in assists with 10,334. Jason Kidd is expected to surpass Jackson's place for second all-time at some point during the upcoming season. He is also 26th all-time in minutes played, 77th all-time in three-pointers made, 65th all-time in three-pointers attempted, and 23rd all-time in steals.

Jackson also scored 12,489 points. While he's ranked high in all these records, he's never achieved great individual success, even though many fans believe he deserves to be elected into the Basketball Hall of Fame. Jackson has played for 7 teams during his NBA career, which will likely hurt his chances to make it to the Hall. As well the fact that he's only been an NBA All-Star once in 1989 and the 1987-88 NBA Rookie of the Year.

Jackson was the 18th overall pick in the 1987 NBA draft by the New York Knicks. He teamed with Patrick Ewing and Charles Oakley for his first few years in the league to bring the Knicks back to prominence. But, before the Knicks peaked and went to the 1994 NBA Finals, Jackson was traded to the Los Angeles Clippers in 1992. He would also play for the Indiana Pacers, Denver Nuggets, Toronto Raptors, Utah Jazz, and Houston Rockets in his NBA career.

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