Jackson provokes response

Oh man, when will these people learn? Lakers coach Phil Jackson has raised mind games to an art form during his Hall of Fame career. He jabbed the Miami Heat on Tuesday by suggesting if the team’s struggles continue, then team president Pat Riley might fire Eric Spoelstra as coach. Jackson likened it to a similar situation in Miami in 2005, when Riley replaced Stan Van Gundy early in the season.

Van Gundy, now coaching the Orlando Magic, responded to Jackson today.

“To second-guess another coach and comment on a situation he knows nothing about, I think, it’s inappropriate and it’s also ignorant,” Van Gundy told reporters. “I don’t mean that commenting on Phil’s intelligence, he’s obviously a very smart guy. I mean it as ignorant — he doesn’t know what that situation was and he doesn’t know what that situation in Miami is now.

“I don’t think that, unless their relationship’s changed drastically, that he and Pat talk on a regular basis. So I doubt he would have any insight ever on what’s going on in Miami.”

Here’s what Miami’s Dwyane Wade said: “The only thing surprising about it is a coach saying it about another coach in this league. I expect that from someone else to say it, but not another coach. It’s unfortunate. But I guess Coach Jackson has earned the right to say what he wants, and he continues to exercise that right.”

Too funny. Don’t these dudes get cable? Or read a newspaper?