Toronto, ON, Canada

The Toronto Raptors are planning to lure legendary coach Phil Jackson out of a two-year retirement and give him a position similar to Pat Riley's role with the Miami Heat.

According to sources, the Raptors are considering offering Jackson a role that will put him in charge of the team's basketball operation.

Recently, it was reported that Jackson is itching to return to the NBA next season but not as coach but to a role similar to Riley that will give him control over the basketball department and the coaching staff.

Jackson also prefers to become a high-level consultant such as Jerry West with the Golden State Warriors.

Jackson is very familiar with Raptors exc Tim Leiweke's work in Los Angeles where he helped get the Staples Center built for the Los Angeles Lakers and Clippers as well as the NHL's Kings.

Leiweke also has a longstanding working relationship with Lakers executive Jeanie Buss, Jackson's fiance.

Leiweke needs to decide whether to keep president Bryan Colangelo and coach Dwane Casey but sources claimed that the team will retain both.

Earlier, Jackson revealed in an interview with the San Francisco Chronicle that "three or four teams" have already expressed interested and that "none of it involves coaching."

"There are some interesting situations that are presenting themselves, but I really haven't made up my mind yet what I'm going to do," Jackson told the newspaper.

Jackson also said he's interested in joining a developing team "where you'd have the influence in (selecting the) coaching staff and the kind of culture that goes along with it."

Jackson almost came out of retirement early this season when the Lakers fired Mike Brown but he was reportedly beaten out by Mike D'Antoni for the coaching job.








Raptors Eyeing Phil Jackson as Head of Basketball Operations