It was two nights ago that TNT analyst Steve Kerr stunned the basketball world by accepting a 5-year, $25 million contract to coach the Golden State Warriors after it was widely presumed he’d been recruited by new Knicks president Phil Jackson to lead the Knicks. The New York Daily News’ Bob Raissman, mindful of the fact Kerr’s been working alongside former Knicks announcer Marv Albert, surmised the latter might’ve had an unfavorable thing or several dozen to say about toiling for MSG owner James Dolan. Albert, for his part, didn’t let Raissman down.
“Well, I told him it never ends well there. Just look at recent history. It’s because of one man (Dolan),” Albert told me Thursday over the telephone. “There is no happiness there. I say this with all kinds of friends I have there and (the ones) at the MSG Network. Everybody hates being there. For coaches it’s very difficult. Steve couldn’t accept anyone (from MSG’s PR staff) following him around with a tape recorder. Like Phil, Steve is a guy who wants to say what he wants to say,” Albert continued. “He’s very opinionated, which doesn’t always work when you are at the Garden.”
During their conversations, Albert said Kerr asked questions, but it was clear he knew “what my whole situation at the Garden was.”
Albert also said Kerr “talked to a lot of people about what went on in the Garden.” And while the Dolan Affect was part of his decision, it was just one of a few factors we already outlined. “He was enamored by New York and Phil. It was more Phil than anything else,” Albert said. “I know Steve felt bad when he said goodbye to Phil after making his decision. Steve really did check it out very carefully. To me it (his decision) was a no-brainer.”