Warriors co-owner Joe Lacob apologized Sunday for comments he made last week at a venture capitalists luncheon in Menlo Park regarding his reasons for firing coach Mark Jackson.
“I have a tremendous amount of respect for Mark Jackson and what he accomplished as our head coach,” Lacob said. “He did a terrific job. I’ve said that many times over the last several months and in recent days, including at this week’s event. I was asked to draw comparisons earlier this week between building businesses in the tech world and the sports world, and unfortunately, I used some poor judgment. That’s my mistake. I did attempt to reach out to Mark on Friday, and I certainly apologize for my comments and any unintended harm. I know that Mark will succeed again in this business.”
Lacob made the recorded comments Wednesday – seven months after firing Jackson – and the YouTube video has since been removed by the interviewer. At the time of Lacob’s comments, the Warriors were 15-2 and off to the best start in franchise history under new coach Steve Kerr.
“You can’t have a staff underneath you that isn’t that good,” Lacob said as part of a question-and-answer session. “And if you’re going to get better, you’ve got to have really good assistants. You’ve got to have people that can be there to replace you. We all know this from all of our companies. It’s … Management 101.
“Carte blanche. Take my wallet. Do whatever it is to get the best assistants that are in the world. Period. End of story. Don’t want to hear it. And (Jackson’s) answer … was, ‘Well, I have the best staff.’ No you don’t.”
Lacob explained that another reason Jackson was fired after leading the team to back-to-back playoff appearances was how the coach was perceived by others in the organization.
“Part of it was that he couldn’t get along with anybody else in the organization,” Lacob said. “And look, he did a great job, and I’ll always compliment him in many respects, but you can’t have 200 people in the organization not like you.”