ESPN’s Stephen A. Smith Was So Excited Phil Jackson Left The Knicks He Came In On Vacation

Fans are thrilled that Phil Jackson is no longer running the Knicks, but I don’t think anyone on this green Earth is more excited that the two parted ways than Stephen A. Smith.

The ESPN analyst was so happy Jackson and the Knicks “parted ways” that he cut his vacation short and hopped on ESPN’s First Take to yell and generally celebrate the fact that Jackson isn’t around to generally disagree with the Knicks’ best players moving forward.

Smith first appeared on Mike & Mike, then told his Twitter followers he was skipping his vacation day to go in on Jackson one last time on First Take. He didn’t disappoint.


Smith once pleaded with the unseen hand of the universe to fire Phil Jackson, asking it to “get him the hell out of New York.” Here’s that clip, in case you forgot what that sounded like.

On Wednesday morning, Smith came by for the first half hour of First Take and he was in a joyous mood. He said Jackson was just in it for the money, and that he “fleeced” James Dolan and the Knicks.

He later recapped his frustrations as he debated with the other Takers, including guest host John Salley. But he was adamant that Jackson just didn’t want to do the work necessary to succeed in New York. Here’s the best line of the show.


“I’m on vacation and I’m already doing more work than Phil Jackson did in three years,” Smith said.

Stephen A. later suggested that a person of color in an NBA front office wouldn’t get nearly as much leeway is Jackson did in New York, especially after three straight 50-loss seasons.

There were no cracks about, well, crack, but it was classic Stephen A. Smith on a day he will always cherish. For once, most of the world agrees with him. And he got to take a vacation from reality in more ways than one.