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Does Jeff Hornacek have to run triangle for Knicks? Reportedly depends whom you ask

Phoenix Suns v Toronto Raptors

TORONTO, ON - NOVEMBER 29: Head Coach Jeff Hornacek of the Phoenix Suns looks on during an NBA game against the Toronto Raptors at the Air Canada Centre on November 29, 2015 in Toronto, Ontario, Canada. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. (Photo by Vaughn Ridley/Getty Images)

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Phil Jackson reportedly told new Knicks coach Jeff Hornacek he wouldn’t have to run to the triangle offense. Hornacek said he’d include triangle principles in his scheme.

What’s really going on?

Chris Mannix of Yahoo Sports:

The message I was getting from the people around Hornacek was that he would get to coach whatever style he wanted to coach. The message I was getting from people with the Knicks was that that wasn’t necessarily true, that there would be, as you mentioned, the fingerprints of the triangle on that.

Hornacek said he’d use triangle elements. Maybe that’s more than lip service and he plans to appease Jackson (though that’s problematic because Hornacek isn’t experienced in coaching the triangle).

Or maybe Hornacek was just trying to quell controversy publicly now then run his own offense with Jackson’s approval (though that would become problematic if Jackson’s ego causes him to demand the triangle after the fact).

But if there’s a real misunderstanding how this will work, that’s already a major problem. It barely matters whether the Knicks misled Hornacek or Hornacek misinterpreted. The difference in expectations will be untenable.