We’re not expecting any Christmas cards to be sent between LeBron James and Phil Jackson this year.
Jackson made headlines Monday for a controversial answer he gave during a Q/A with ESPN’s Jackie MacMullan. And it appears James wasn’t a fan of Jackson’s answer based on the exchange he had with reporters Tuesday, via USA TODAY Sports.
James: “I had nothing but respect for him as a coach …”
Reporters: “Had respect?”
Reporters: “Until now?”
Jackson’s controversial answer, which used the word “posse,” came when MacMullan asked about James leaving the Miami Heat to return to the Cavs.
“It had to hurt when they lost LeBron,” Jackson said, via ESPN.com. “That was definitely a slap in the face. But there were a lot of little things that came out of that. When LeBron was playing with the Heat, they went to Cleveland and he wanted to spend the night. They don’t do overnights. Teams just don’t.
“So now (coach Erik) Spoelstra has to text (Pat) Riley and say, ‘What do I do in this situation?’ And Pat, who has iron-fist rules, answers, ‘You are on the plane, you are with this team.’ You can’t hold up the whole team because you and your mom and your posse want to spend an extra night in Cleveland.
“I always thought Pat had this really nice vibe with his guys. But something happened there where it broke down. I do know LeBron likes special treatment. He needs things his way.”
Maverick Carter, a business partner of James’, also responded to Jackson’s “posse” comment Tuesday.
“I don’t care that he talks about LeBron,” Carter told ESPN.com. “He could say he’s not that good or the greatest in the world as a basketball player. I wouldn’t care. It’s the word ‘posse’ and the characterization I take offense to. If he would have said LeBron and his agent, LeBron and his business partners or LeBron and his friends, that’s one thing. Yet because you’re young and black, he can use that word. We’re grown men.”
Thumbnail photo via David Richard/USA TODAY Sports Images