New York Notes: Knicks, Ntilikina, Nets, Stauskas

With the Lakers playing the Knicks on Tuesday, Luke Walton was asked about his old coach, Phil Jackson, and admitted that Jackson’s ouster in New York didn’t sit particularly well with him, per Al Iannazzone of Newsday.

“I don’t know all the details of what was going on here, obviously, but a mentor to me like that and someone that means as much to me as Phil does, I’m not in favor of it happening,” the current Lakers head coach said of Jackson. “There’s people out here that I wanted to see succeed. I love the triangle offense. I wanted to see that work. But for whatever reasons it didn’t.”

Here’s more out of New York:

  • Kristaps Porzingis and Frank Ntilikina are showing Knicks fans that it’s okay to be optimistic about the club’s future, says ESPN’s Ian Begley. In praising Ntilikina, Begley notes that the rookie point guard is “low maintenance,” adding that there were some in the Knicks organization who had serious concerns before the draft about LaVar Ball’s impact in the event that the team had a chance to pick Lonzo Ball.
  • Sources tell Brian Lewis of The New York Post that the Nets‘ deal to have Joseph Tsai buy a 49% stake in the franchise could be done by the end of the month. Although it’s not finalized yet, controlling owner Mikhail Prokhorov referred to Tsai as “a great partner” who “will help the game and help the NBA.”
  • While Jahlil Okafor was the primary piece in last week’s trade between the Nets and the Sixers, the deal also gave Brooklyn coach Kenny Atkinson another reclamation project to work on. As Lewis writes for The Post, it will be interesting to see what Atkinson – who has a reputation as a “guard whisperer” – can get out of Nik Stauskas.
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