Brian Scalabrine reassignment highlights 'increasingly dysfunctional atmosphere' between Mark Jackson, Golden State Warriors management

Tom Szczerbowski-USA TODAY Sport

In addition to news that Warriors assistant coach Brian Scalabrine has been reassigned, Adrian Wojnarowski reported today that Warriors coach Mark Jackson has explored other job opportunities during his time with the organization.

There's a lot we could take from Adrian Wojnarowski's report that Golden State Warriors assistant coach Brian Scalabrine has been reassigned, especially with regard to Jackson's future with the team.

The key section in Woj's article as it relates to Jackson's future is the following:

Jackson, in his third year at the helm of the Warriors, has one year left on his contract, but has come under increased scrutiny within the organization for how he has run the team and worked on the job. There have been no conversations about an extension for Jackson – nor are they expected to take place, sources said.

Jackson, 48, had tried and failed to get involved with several head-coaching openings over the past year, including the Los Angeles Clippers and Brooklyn Nets, league sources said.

I don't think we know enough at this point to get into any extended commentary about what this means or who wins, but here's a brief rundown of some of the key points from Woj's report along with some resulting questions.

What we know

  • Brian Scalabrine has been reassigned: This on its own reflects some sort of disagreement between Jackson and the management about what should be happening with the team: management intends to keep Scalabrine with the organization despite the coach wanting him reassigned.
  • There are not currently any plans for a contract extension: That's not exactly a vote of confidence from management. And adding a disagreement over Scalabrine on top of that doesn't exactly bode well.
  • Jackson has explored other job opportunities: Although he was unsuccessful, Jackson at the very least tried to get jobs elsewhere. For those of you who want Jackson fired, it certainly sounds like he has one foot out of the door on the surface.

What we still don't know

  • Why specifically was Scalabrine reassigned? The fact that there seems to be disagreement between Jackson and management is reason enough to believe that there might be some growing tension between the two sides. But just to put some context around this, it might help to know why the move was made. Trey Kerby tweeted out a link from January today that might provide some insight into how Jackson approaches his relationship to his assistants that might be relevant: when Jackson was asked back then about Jason Kidd's decision to reassign Lawrence Frank, he said the following:

    "There’s no difference of opinions with my staff and I. They give suggestions. Some I go with. Some I don’t. But at the end of the day it’s my decision and we are united in whichever way we decide to go. If you have a problem with that, you should not be my assistant coach. That’s the way I feel about it."

  • Is Jackson still interested in exploring job openings should they become available this offseason? Woj's report says nothing about whether Jackson is still interested in leaving or if there was something uniquely attractive about those particular job openings, but the fact that the Warriors apparently made no effort to extend him in light of that knowledge further reinforces the idea that they're not too concerned about him walking.

Remaining questions

  • Will this development have any effect on the team down the stretch? From what we know, Jackson is still popular among Warriors players. But with the team still jockeying for playoff positioning, will this - either the news or the fact of a change to the coaching staff - have any effect on what actually goes on in the locker room or on the court?
  • Are there any circumstances under which the Warriors definitely would retain Jackson? Are they waiting for a deeper run in the playoffs? More consistent play on the court? A benchmark for regular season wins? We really don't know if there are any pre-determined conditions or expectations that would factor into the decision to keep Jackson around.
  • If Jackson is looking to get out, would the Warriors part ways and just move on? An argument could certainly be made that there's no point in keeping Jackson around for the final year of his contract if he's looking to get out anyway - this team is too talented to waste its window of opportunity on coaching drama.

The timing of this story is not particularly great: this is a time of year when teams need focus, not a national media feeding frenzy over juicy gossip. And regardless of what ultimately happens with Jackson, the most immediate question that comes of this is to what extent this "dysfunction" will begin to influence the players.

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