Mark Jackson is one bitter dude.
The ESPN analyst and former Golden State Warriors head coach was calling Game 5 of the Eastern Conference Finals between the Toronto Raptors and Cleveland Cavaliers when fellow analyst Jeff Van Gundy started to talk about the surprisingly strong play of Cavs forward Richard Jefferson. After finishing his analysis, Jackson jumped in and threw his former Warriors player under the bus.
Jeff Van Gundy: “Don’t talk about what you need to do to win. Do what you need to do to win. Richard Jefferson, great loose ball play and has always been a terrific finisher on the break.”
Jackson “Guy’s a pro. Stays ready. Played for me in Golden State. Cost us a series in San Antonio, missing two free throws, but I’m not holding onto that. Still has plenty in the tank and playing at a high level for this Cavaliers team.”
For a guy who says he’s “not holding onto that,” it certainly comes across that way.
What is Jackson referring to? In Game 1 of the 2013 Western Conference semifinals against the San Antonio Spurs, with just under two minutes to play and the Warriors up eight points, Jefferson missed two free throws.
The Spurs would come back and win the game in double overtime. San Antonio would go on to beat the Warriors in six games. While the free throws would have padded Golden States lead, it’s hilariously sour for Jackson to say it “cost them the series,” when in fact, at worse, it cost them a single game and they still had an 8 point lead in said game.
Twitter seemed to pick up on Jackson’s shade throwing.
Jackson was probably trying to make a joke out of this, but it came off pretty harsh. If he’s still holding on to those two missed free throws from three years ago, so be it, but he doesn’t need to let the entire world know.