Jackson fielding Porzingis calls: 'We're listening, but we're not intrigued'
Just mere moments after it was reported that the Knicks were calling rival teams to discuss potential trades involving Kristaps Porzingis, team president Phil Jackson was on New York television giving his side of the story.
"As much as we value Kristaps and what he's done for us, when a guy doesn't show up at his exit meeting everyone starts speculating on the duration or movability from a club," Jackson said Wednesday on MSG's "Knicks Night Live."
"We've been getting calls. We're listening, but we're not intrigued at this level. But as much as we love this guy, we have to do what's good for this club."
When asked what Jackson believes is good for the Knicks, the Hall of Famer responded simply with: "future."
"Does it bring us two starters and a draft pick, or something that's even beyond that? It's something we have to look at going down the road," Jackson added. "We know what he is. He's a unicorn and he's special."
As a 21-year-old sophomore, Porzingis averaged 18.1 points, 7.2 rebounds, two blocks, and 1.5 assists on an effective field-goal percentage of 50.7 while being limited to just 66 games due to a lingering left Achilles injury.
Jackson also noted that in his 25-to-30 years of coaching, he'd never had a player skip an exit meeting - as Porzingis did at the conclusion of the Knicks' latest disappointing campaign - though Shaquille O'Neal reportedly did just that 13 years ago in L.A.
"I had a real good relationship with Kristaps over the last two years, so it was really surprising," Jackson said.