Jan 10, 2018; New York, NY, USA; New York Knicks power forward Kristaps Porzingis (6) drives against Chicago Bulls power forward Lauri Markkanen (24) during overtime at Madison Square Garden. The Bulls defeated the Knicks 122-119 in double overtime. Mandatory Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports

Rookie sensation Lauri Markkanen is clearly the bright spot for this year’s Chicago Bulls. Wednesday night, he was instrumental in a double overtime win over the Knicks, going off for 33 points while hitting eight three-pointers and finishing one monster dunk.

After the game, the Daily News understandably focused on the New York Knicks having scouted Markkanen ahead of last year’s draft. Phil Jackson was still in control of the team and when he met with Markkanen, he had the Finnish big man eat some weird food:

One of the few previous times Lauri Markkanen was in New York, he dined with Phil Jackson as part of the pre-draft process. The feeling from the Knicks, at that time, was Markkanen could serve as a replacement for Kristaps Porzingis should Jackson pull the trigger on the trade offers that were flooding his phone for the Latvian.

“He made me taste raw fish, or raw steak,” Markkanen told the Daily News. “I didn’t like it.”

We all know how the rest of the story unfolded: The Knicks kept Porzingis, drafted Frank Ntilikina one spot after the Bulls took Markkanen, and Jackson was fired.

Jackson was known for his unusual management style, and considering what he had Dennis Smith Jr. eat, this was apparently his latest tactic:

Before Phil Jackson passed on perhaps the most exciting prospect of the 2017 rookie class, the Knicks president encouraged Dennis Smith Jr. to eat an exotic delicacy.

“We went out to some restaurant and they had me eat some octopus, like an actual octopus tentacle,” Smith Jr. told the Daily News. “First time ever. I wasn’t going to try it, honestly. They kind of put the pressure on me to do it.”

It’s almost hard to see why Phil Jackson failed to build the Knicks into a contender.

[Daily News]

About Jay Rigdon

Jay is a columnist at Awful Announcing. He is not a strong swimmer. He is probably talking to a dog in a silly voice at this very moment.