NBA

Phil Jackson admits Goran Dragic signing was real option before trade deadline

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New York Knicks fans may be trying their best to block out the 2014-15 NBA season from their memory but, thanks to ESPN's current serialisation of mid-campaign conversations with team president Phil Jackson, that is becoming an increasingly hard thing to do.

Last week's explanation as to just why J.R. Smith and Iman Shumpert were jettisoned from the roster may have been welcome news for New York fans but the latest instalment is likely only to leave them frustrated.

Losing out

That's because, according to Jackson, the Knicks had serious interest in bringing in one of the league's most dynamic point guards, Goran Dragic, before last season's trade deadline - the player himself interested in the move before discussions his a major stumbling block.

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“Goran Dragic, for one," ESPN's Charlie Rosen reports Jackson as saying in a February 24th discussion.

"I heard through the grapevine that he was open to coming here. We worked hard on that possibility, but the asking price was too dear."

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Dragic ultimately ended up in Miami after the Heat traded with the Phoenix Suns, and the Slovenian has since signed an $18 million per season contract.

Distracted

Clearly Phil Jackson wasn't willing to match that figure and Knicks fans will be cursing that fact as they look back on what might have been, especially when the franchise president admits the front office were too preoccupied by the prospect of a star arrival to focus on other options:

"Maybe we worked on that possibility so much so that it distracted us."

"I mean, Dragic is every team's current choice for a nuclear option - a guard who can penetrate and either score or kick...But anyway, that's not really the way I want us to play."

With the Phil Jackson still hellbent on implementing his famous triangle offense, many Knicks fans who watched last season's roster struggle to adjust to the system will be frustrated to hear that they missed out on a potential game changer in part because of the team's insistence on making it work.

Only time will tell if the Knicks are right to be cautious with their money (and steadfast on the triangle). The Dragic news, coupled with a number of lacklustre free agency pitches, will only intensify the pressure in the short term.

Knicks fans: Would you rather go after big names or keep faith with the triangle? Have your say in the comments below...

Topics:
NBA
New York Knicks
Atlantic Division
Eastern Conference

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