NBA coaching legend Phil Jackson may be plotting a return to the league. Reuters

The New York Knicks are rumored to be planning to offer a contract to retired head coach Phil Jackson if they don't advance past the first round of the playoffs, according to reports. The contract could be worth $50 million over four years.

The Knicks will most likely face either the Miami Heat or the Chicago Bulls in the first round, which marks their second straight playoff appearance after a 4-0 first-round sweep at the hands of the Boston Celtics last postseason. Interim head coach Mike Woodson, who replaced previous head coach Mike D'Antoni, could have his temporary tag removed and mitigate a Jackson hiring if he continues his winning ways.

Jackson last coached in 2011 for the Los Angeles Lakers, a team he has won five NBA championships with. If he were to take the Knicks head coaching job, it would be his third NBA team at the helm, in many ways having come full circle in his NBA career. Jackson played with the Knicks from 1967-1978.

More importantly, though, Jackson would be brought in to bring cohesion and motivation to a Knicks team that couldn't maximize its fullest potential despite a roster swamped with talent.

Jackson hasn't come out publicly to say he wants to coach the Knicks, so he seems content with retirement. However, if the Knicks falter early in the playoffs, the Zen Master may very well return.

A talented team combined with a huge contract might be too lucrative to deny.