When you're called upon to start a career in New York, you know you've hit the big time and know about the challenges and burdens attached to it. Tasked with the largest decision-making role in the city's most beloved pastime, Mark Jackson's acts literally became worthy of a Hollywood ending.
Jackson, a point guard formerly of the New York Knicks and now serving as ESPN/ABC's top game night analyst, is one of several subjects featured in "NYC Point Gods", featuring several legendary players from the one that forever shifted the history of metropolitan hoops, particularly in their respective spots at the one. The 17-year floor veteran was more than ready for a well-earned closeup.
"I'm honored to have grabbed the torch from guys like Lenny Wilkens and Bob Cousy and Tiny Archibald, and was one of the guys that handed it off to guys that played after me," Jackson told People Magazine. "It's a tremendous story to tell, and I'm honored to be part of the group that was asked to, tasked to, tell it."
Produced by Kevin Durant's media network Boardroom, "Point Gods" also features profiles on Kenny Smith, Dwayne Washington, and Stephon Marbury. The Knicks, ironically, have struggled with the position in recent years, the most recent washout in the role being four-time All-Star Kemba Walker. A new, hopefully lasting, solution has manifested in the form of $104 million man Jalen Brunson, whose arrival was partly facilitated by the trade of Walker on draft night.
Jackson, a Brooklyn native and winner of the 1988 Rookie of the Year with the Knicks after arriving from St. John's, has already offered his thoughts on how Brunson can shift the metropolitan scene. He describes New York's basketball scene as relentless but rewarding and has taken the same approach to his media career, one that has had him calling every NBA Finals matchup sincne 2007 (with the exception of a two-year absence during his time at the helm of the Golden State Warriors). It's also one that requires adaptability, which Jackson was likewise pleased to expand upon.
"I embrace the realness of New York City. I don't have to guess how you feeling or what your thoughts are, you spell it out to me, and you make it easier for me to cut away from all the nonsense that's irrelevant, and I know if you're with me or against me," he said. "I embrace any part of media that tells the truth and doesn't deal with, 'Because I'm connected to you, I can't say when you're wrong.' So I like the idea also of the person that's involved in the story now having a voice to review what's not true and put a stamp on what is true."
NYC Point Gods is available to stream on the Showtime Anytime app.