LA Daily News: (Jackson) didn't hide his interest in acquiring Rush - both when he returned as coach last summer and possibly again this summer.
"When I came back, one of my first considerations was can we get Kareem Rush back here to play on this basketball club," Jackson said. "I do value his game and hope that he has a good career."
LA Times: More than 2,000 miles away and a couple of years removed, Jackson was still feeling protective of Kareem Rush after the former Laker guard was unceremoniously waived Saturday by the Charlotte Bobcats.
Bobcat General Manager/Coach Bernie Bickerstaff released a terse statement in which he said, "The Bobcats are about two things — hard work and maximum effort. With that in mind, we think that it is best to go in a different direction with Kareem."
Jackson was "very surprised."
"I thought it was vindictive," he said. "I didn't like to see it because it's one of the guys that we nurtured here. He was contributing to us a lot in the [run to the NBA Finals] two years ago.
"There's, what, eight games left in the season? You could do that probably April 30, or whenever the season's over if you put him on the inactive list."
Jackson explored the possibility of acquiring Rush before the season but declined to comment on whether the Lakers would try to sign him during the off-season.
Kareem Rush, who played for the Lakers for two-plus seasons before he was traded to Charlotte last season, was waived by the Bobcats on Saturday.
Jackson, who coached Rush for two seasons, liked him.
Rush made 6 of 7 three-pointers against Minnesota in Game 6 of the 2004 Western Conference finals, helping the Lakers reach the NBA Finals.
"When I came back, one of my first considerations was, 'Can we get Kareem Rush back?'" Jackson said.
When asked if the Lakers would take a look at Rush this summer, Jackson smiled and said he wouldn't comment because he "might get fined for suggesting that we'd like to have him on our team again."
Because any player that was active during the season that was picked up after March 1st (I think?) is inellgible. Also, not sure if anyone can confirm this, but isn't Jim Jackson also unavailable for the playoffs?
The cap-strapped Lakers might have found one of their first off-season targets in Rush, who spent slightly more than two seasons with the team before being traded to Charlotte in December 2004 for two second-round picks.
Jackson is comfortable with Rush, who knows the triangle offense, is a decent defender and, for better or worse, a streak shooter. Rush averaged 10.1 points with the Bobcats this season before falling out of favor.
"Kareem often expressed fondness of being back with the Lakers," said Rush's agent, Calvin Andrews. "If Phil's interested, we're interested. We'll take a look at it and see."
By Mike Bresnahan, Times Staff Writer; April 4, 2006
This season Phil Jackson has exchanged insults with Dallas Maverick owner Mark Cuban and has been referred to as "one of the great complainers of all time" by Miami Heat Coach Pat Riley.
Next up? General Manager-Coach Bernie Bickerstaff of the Charlotte Bobcats.
Bickerstaff took exception to Jackson's comments regarding the Bobcats' waiving of Kareem Rush and criticized Jackson's assertion that the move was "vindictive" because it was done with so few games left in the season.
"Phil has that ability [to judge]," Bickerstaff sarcastically told the Charlotte Observer. "He was in our locker room … at our games."
Bickerstaff also mentioned the tell-all book written by Jackson in 2004, in which numerous locker-room conversations were revealed and Kobe Bryant was labeled uncoachable at times.
"He probably forgets he wrote a book for profit," Bickerstaff said. "So he has a lot of credibility."
The Bobcats waived Rush on Saturday, with a statement from Bickerstaff saying, "The Bobcats are about two things — hard work and maximum effort. With that in mind, we think that it is best to go in a different direction with Kareem."
Jackson questioned the timing of the decision.
"There's, what, eight games left in the season?" he said Sunday. "You could do that probably April 30, or whenever the season's over if you put him on the inactive list."