The Golden State Warriors, stinging from a Game 7 loss to the Los Angeles Clippers in the first round of the playoffs, fired head coach Mark Jackson Tuesday.
“It’s never easy to make a decision of this nature,” General Manager Bob Myers said in a statement. “Mark has accomplished many good things during his three years with the organization, including his role in helping elevate this team into a better position than it was when he arrived nearly 36 months ago. We’re appreciative of his dedication and commitment since his arrival and are extremely grateful for his contributions. However, as an organization, we simply feel it’s best to move in a different direction at this time.”
Jackson enjoyed and endured a successful albeit tempestuous tenure in Golden State. The former Knicks point guard became the franchise’s third coach to win fifty games in going 51-31 this season. But he clashed with assistant coaches, one of whom he fired for allegedly taping discussions, and resented the fact that the team refused to award him a new contract.
This season was the first in more than two decades that the franchise appeared in consecutive playoffs. Jackson finishes his stint with a 121-109 record. An ESPN report mentioned Iowa State’s Fred Hoiburg, Steve Kerr, rumored to be a first-choice of Phil Jackson for the New York vacancy, former Miami Heat and Orlando Magic coach Stan Van Gundy, and former Grizzlies coach Lionel Hollins as possible replacements.