- ESPN analyst and former NBA goalkeeper Mark Jackson described the New York Knicks’ signing of Galen Bronson as a “race at home.”
- Jackson called Bronson a winner and a “culture changer” who should help the Knicks improve this season.
- Jackson said the Knicks are far from a championship, but winning in New York makes legends.
The New York Knicks have made one of the NBA’s biggest off-season moves, signing 25-year-old point guard Jalen Bronson to a four-year, $104 million contract.
Mark Jackson, ESPN analyst and former NBA point guard, agrees with the newest soccer player in town.
Speaking to Insider while promoting his participation in the “NYC Point Gods” documentary about the legendary New York City-born point guards, Jackson called Bronson as he signs “home.”
“I had the privilege of playing with his dad Rick when I was at the New York Knicks and watching Galen grow,” Jackson said. “He’s a winner. He’s a culture changer. He’s a guy who competes on a nightly basis and he’s a true pro and a team player. So, I think he was a home signature for the Knicks and a step forward. They’ve gotten better over the course of the slack season.”
Bronson is coming off a season averaging 16 points, four rebounds and four assists for the Dallas Mavericks. He had a breakthrough in the playoffs this spring, averaging 21.6 points over 18 games, including consecutive 30-point games in the first round against the Utah Jazz while the Mavs were without Luka Doncic.
As documented on “NYC Point Gods,” which premieres July 29 on Showtime, New York City’s point guards often had a mix of flash and grit representative for the city. Jackson, a New York native who owns both of them on the field, believes Bronson has the same qualities that will help him cope.
“He’s been a winner since he was born,” Jackson said.
Furthermore, Jackson praised Bronson’s growth, noting that it is often difficult for children of professional athletes to break through.
“It’s hard to be a professional athlete kid and have requirements and expectations,” Jackson said. “And he didn’t disappoint. He’s holding her on the right track.”
Bronson was a known target for the Knicks in the lead up to free agency, and the team made several deals to make way for his signature. The moves made before Bronson signed seemed so focused that The NBA may achieve the Knicks because of the absurd. Knicks reportedly named Galen’s father, Rick, to the coaching staff in June. Meanwhile, Knicks boss Leon Rose was formerly Galen’s agent – a role now occupied by Rose’s son Sam.
Some in the NBA world criticized Bronson’s contract, calling it excessive for a goalkeeper who didn’t make the All-Star team. However, the Knicks seem to be working on a plan to make steady improvements until the time is right to acquire a superstar who can help launch them toward contention for the championship.
Jackson publicly laughed at the idea of the Knicks winning a championship soon, saying the expectation to have Bronson on board should be an “improvement.”
“Let’s win a playoff,” Jackson said. “Let’s go ahead in the playoffs. I think it’s a process.”
However, as a New Yorker and ex-Nick, Jackson knows the impact the championship has had on the city.
“You think Walt Frazier is still walking around. Legendary. You know when he walks into a room because he won a championship with the Knicks,” Jackson said. Willis Reid will always be remembered because he won a championship with the Knicks. You talk about Dave Debuscherry – I can name these guys off the top of the head – Bill Bradley and Dick Barnett, Reed Holzman as coach. You think about impact. This is ’69, this is ’72, and we In 2022. But these men and the memories they put into the hearts of so many New Yorkers will last forever. And I think that’s the effect when I do it here. If I do it in New York, there’s no better place to do it.”