Kobe Bryant currently has five championship rings in his trophy case, but in his eyes, they would not have existed without Phil Jackson.
Bryant spoke to the Daily News and he praised Jackson and the positive impact the Zen Master had on his career. Bryant won all five of his titles with Jackson on the bench under the famous Triangle offense. From the three-peat with Shaquille O’Neal to the recent repeat, the roster may have been different, but there was one constant for Kobe; the Zen Master.
The reason for Bryant’s want for Jackson to return? Easy. Bryant provided a startling admission on whether he’d have five NBA titles if not for Jackson’s guidance.
“Probably not,” Bryant said.
Jackson instilled a lot of confidence into his players and the Triangle allowed them to shine even under pressure situations. The system was one that fit Bryant perfectly and it helped the Lakers franchise raise five championship banners.
However, at the end of the day, it seems as though Bryant and Jackson will never be reunited. The Lakers gave the head coaching position to Mike D’Antoni and there will be a new offense implemented into the playbook. Bryant has welcomed D’Antoni back with opens arms and there will be some very exciting basketball in Los Angeles.
D’Antoni is expected to make his Lakers’ debut soon and it will be interesting to see the Lakers players work together on the court.