"I want to be more specific. It's one thing managing down, managing players. He did a good job of that. The other thing is managing sideways or managing up. Some of those skills with Mark are new skills. He's been a basketball coach and player, but not a manager.
"He had some problems within the organization, in my estimation, in Bob's estimation (Bob Myers, general manager). It got pretty difficult around here. There were people who didn't get along that well during the course of this year. Why that happened, I don't know. I can only tell you it did. We felt we would have to make a change and get a different guy to take the basketball team to the next level."
Cohn: Does that mean Jackson was not getting along with ownership and management?
Lacob: "He got along with me very well. But there were issues within the organization, between basketball operations and coaches. And perhaps a few other bunches in the organization that really were not handled the way I would like to see them handled."
Cohn: Were you aware he had a very weak coaching staff and did that factor into your thinking?
Lacob: "I don't want to make an assessment of how strong or weak his staff was. I will say that he had full, full control of who was hired and who worked for him and I just think, going forward, he might want to hire some people to further complement his skills."
Cohn: What qualities do you want in the new coach?
Lacob: "We're really going to take our time and do this right. We want someone who is a leader. You always want that in a head coach. It's important to have someone who has great organizational skills. I want to emphasize in the last playoff series he was not out-coached. We lost, I think, maybe to the better team in the last two minutes of a seventh game."
Cohn: Did Jackson and Jerry West not get along and was that a factor in the firing?
Lacob: "I can't say no factor, but you have to understand one thing. Jerry West is an opinionated guy. He has a lot to add. He does have some interaction with basketball. He gets involved with the draft, free agency, advising us on coaches and players.
"Did he get along great with Mark Jackson? I would say they got along well enough. I don't think it was a perfect relationship, by any means. It was not the reason Mark is not here today."
End of conversation. To sum up Jackson in this, his exit column, here is my take on the firing: Jackson won 51 games, but he is not a good overall coach. He is not a good teacher. He and his staff have almost ruined Harrison Barnes.
He did not get along with ownership, showed a shocking lack of tact. Myers met the media on Tuesday. Asked what qualities the new coach needs, Myers said, "We can find someone that will be very successful on the court and very successful working with ownership and management."
That means Jackson was not successful in that area. This just in — a head coach needs to get along with the owner, needs to get along with the GM, needs to get along with various advisers. Needs to build relationships with the whole group. You get the impression Jackson was a first-class pain.