Phil Jackson: ‘I Don’t Think People Got The Humor’ After Backlash To NBA Woke Remark

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Legendary basketball coach Phil Jackson recently got heat for saying he no longer watched the NBA because it was too woke. He was also criticized for saying he and his family joked about players wearing things on their jerseys like “Black Lives Matter” on their jerseys in place of names.

“Like ‘Justice went to the basket and Equal Opportunity knocked him down’… Some of my grandkids thought it was pretty funny to play up those names. I couldn’t watch that,” Jackson joked in an interview with music producer Rick Rubin.

A lot of people not only got what Jackson was saying, but also agree with him.

But the mob wouldn’t be the mob if they didn’t freak out just the same and lead Jackson to clarify in a subsequent interview.

Jackson made an appearance on Stacey King’s Gimme The Hot Sauce podcast. In it, he discussed his comments from his interview with Rubin.

“I don’t think people got the humor,” Jackson said. “The names are on the back of the players that were in the bubble because if you apply them to defending and challenging and going to the hoop, and you use those monikers that were on the names, it had a funny aspect to it. That’s just what I was bringing up to the kids. Visually, this is kind of humorous.”

Phil Jackson clarified remarks he made in a recent interview with music producer Rick Rubin. (Photo by Jeff Haynes/NBAE via Getty Images)

It’s Wild That Jackson Had To Clarify His Original Comments

It is humorous, even if Jalen Rose doesn’t get it.

It’s funny in precisely the same way the original XFL was hilarious in that broadcasters would have to say, “And it’s caught in the endzone by He Hate Me!”

It’s funny because “Justice” and “Equal Opportunity” are not names people have (although, in fairness, Metta World Peace was for a while). In the context of a traditional play-by-play call, it’s completely absurd.

People have completely lost any perception of the difference between the subject and the target of a joke. Yeah, he was laughing at the absurdity of people wearing names like “Justice” and “Equal Opportunity.” Not the concepts themselves.

I can’t believe I just had to type that sentence. It’s also nuts that Jackson had to clarify things even further.

“I had nothing against BLM or the cause that was behind it,” Jackson said. “The humorous nature of going completely woke by the NBA really was like, it’s pretty hard to watch.”

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Written by Matt Reigle

Matt is a University of Central Florida graduate and a long-suffering Philadelphia Flyers fan living in Orlando, Florida. He can usually be heard playing guitar, shoe-horning obscure quotes from The Simpsons into conversations, or giving dissertations to captive audiences on why Iron Maiden is the greatest band of all time.

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