Phil Jackson

On December 23, 1997, the Chicago Bulls beat the Los Angeles Clippers 94-89 at the United Center in Chicago to give their coach Phil Jackson his 500th career victory.

The win moved the Bulls to 17-9 for the season. They finished the season with 68 wins and 14 losses.

Jackson went on to coach his teams to 1,155 wins out of 1,640 games played. Talented players like Michael Jordan and Scottie Pippen with the Bulls as well as Kobe Bryant and Shaquille O’Neal with the Los Angeles Lakers played a major role in his success as a coach.

The Bulls hired Jackson as a coach for the 1989-90 season and stayed with the team until he signed a contract with the Lakers for the 1999-00 season. He retired after the 2010-11 season. He lead the two teams to a total of 11 NBA Championship titles as well as two separate western conference titles. His teams won 229 out of the 333 playoff games they played in. He was named one of the top 10 coaches in NBA history during the 1996-97 season.

Before he was a coach, Jackson played for North Dakota University as well as the NBA. He was drafted by the New York Knicks in the second round of the 1967 draft. He also played for the New Jersey Nets for two seasons before he stopped his career as a player at the end of the 1979-80 season.

“Love is the force that ignites the spirit and binds teams together.” –Phil Jackson

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