We have a tendency to lionize certain super-successful sports figures, and perhaps rightly so. Phil Jackson must exist on a higher mental plane than you or I, since he’s the only coach to ever win as many rings as he has. Listen to all the stories about giving out books! Who gives out books? A genius, that’s who.
(Kyle Orton wants his look back, sir.)
So when Jonah Hill was on Jimmy Kimmel Live last night and telling stories about his primo seats at the Staples Center (and a Jack Nicholson he ain’t), we expected to hear about the mind-bending maxims coming from the venerable coach as he guided his team to yet another ring. We did not expect to hear the censor’s beep.
“My agent has these awesome seats that are right next to the bench and […] I get to sit there like four or five times a year.
Hill said while at a Lakers game, HBO’s “Curb Your Enthusiasm” was filming and “they’re like, ‘Can we use your seats and you take the two seats next to you while we shoot the thing?’ Of course, I’m a huge fan. Anything, they’re not even my seats. So I went to the seats right next to those ones and they shot their scene and then they were done.
My friend and I were like, ‘Let’s switch back to the other seats,’ but we didn’t realize that’s not good etiquette during the middle of the basketball game. So we switched and all of a sudden Phil Jackson - who’s never looked in our direction - turns to us and says, ‘Hey, this isn’t musical chairs! Next time you move around during a play I’ll kick you the (expletive) out of here!’ It was the most terrible feeling because I look up to this guy so much.”
Jackson, of course, wasn’t going to kick Hill out - you never see NBA coaches pull something bush league like that during an actual game - but the point was well-made. If Phil ever snapped at us, we’d probably start crying. No joke, and not even the kind of crying you do when you’re pretending not to. Full-on bawling.
Hill also told a story about having Kobe Bryant sit next to hm and begin quoting Superbad lines, which must be one of the most surreal moments of his life.
Not that we think Kobe Bryant doesn’t like comedies - at the end of the day, damn near any guy his age just wants to go home to some dirty jokes and call it a night - but there must be about under 100 non-athletes worldwide with whom he can have that conversation without the other party responding with some combination of “you’re Kobe Bryant,” nods, and unintelligble grunts. Fame’s a bitch sometimes.