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Jackson in line to be Knicks chief of operations: ESPN

NEW YORK -- Phil Jackson, who has won a record 11 NBA titles as a coach, is near to concluding a deal to become the New York Knicks basketball operations boss, ESPN reported Tuesday.

The U.S.-based sports news network, citing unnamed sources, said the Knicks were confident they would have final details sorted out this week and an announcement of a deal by next week.

Jackson, 68, retired as a coach in May of 2011 after having guided the Chicago Bulls to six NBA titles in the 1990s and the Los Angeles Lakers to five NBA crowns from 2000-2010.

Jackson is engaged to Jeanie Buss, the brother of Lakers owner Jim Buss.

Jackson would replace Steve Mills, who was named president and general manager of the Knicks last September.

But the Knicks have been a flop this season at 25-40, 3.5 games behind the Atlanta Hawks for the eighth and final playoff spot in the Eastern Conference.

The team also has superstar Carmelo Anthony looking at free agency after this season, although having Jackson in the fold could entice talent to the Knicks that might have had second thoughts given their struggles this season.

Jackson played for the Knicks from 1967-1978 and helped the team win its most recent NBA crown in 1973.

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