Mark Jackson coaches the Warriors in Oakland but keeps his home base in Southern California, which is a small detail, but the details matter.

They especially matter when team ownership has expressed a desire for Jackson to establish at least partial residence here.

That issue was raised when co-owner Joe Lacob and Jackson's agent held brief contract extension talks last offseason, according to an NBA source. Lacob's request was dropped even before the contract discussions were tabled, the source said.

But now, with Jackson possibly coaching the Warriors for the final time Thursday in Game 6 against the Los Angeles Clippers, those aborted talks last summer can be viewed as some of the first cracks in this relationship.

They're fissures now, widening by the week, even after a 51-victory regular season and back-to-back playoff appearances.

If there is a lack of trust now, it began a year ago when Lacob and Jackson contemplated what it would take to extend this relationship much longer.

By the way, my understanding is that Warriors management has made no final decision on Jackson, who is under contract for one more season and has done impressive things with this team throughout his three-season tenure.

If the Warriors win the next two games to advance to the second round of the playoffs, that could enhance Jackson's status; a second-round victory would probably lock it up, in management's eyes.


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But such success could also push Jackson to demand an immediate large extension or induce him to look to other job openings, and that would start the whole conflict cycle up again.

So ... if the Warriors decide to move on from Jackson after the season is over, it will be due to far more serious reasons than his decision to commute from L.A.

Jackson is a polarizing figure in so many ways, and increasingly he's polarizing within Warriors HQ.

He's loved by most of his players and respected by the front office for getting the Warriors to play defense and play together; and yet he's also a huge target for fans and sometimes for Warriors executives when things go awry, including in this series against the Clippers.

This is where Jackson has run into some indirect conflict with NBA legend and Warriors executive Jerry West, by the way. Jackson has occasionally rolled his eyes whenever West interacts with Warriors players because Jackson believes all basketball instruction should come from the coaches.

West, meanwhile, has privately voiced concerns to other front office members about Jackson's strategic ideas and the strength of the coaching staff after the departure of former assistant Michael Malone last summer.

West and Jackson are, of course, aware of the other's feelings, though I have heard of no direct dispute between them.

Meanwhile, Warriors management believes it's provided Jackson with a very talented, expensive roster that perhaps underachieved this regular season.

The management point: What does it say about a coach if two of his assistants need to be dispatched in the middle of the season for separate incidents challenging or trying to undermine their boss?

That would be, of course, Brian Scalabrine (for insubordinate acts) and Darren Erman (for secretly taping conversations, according to an ESPN report).

Can the Warriors find another coach who would get along just as well with the players and yet also operate more smoothly with the front office and assistants and maybe get the offense to play more fluidly around Stephen Curry?

Yes, Warriors management has come up with a hypothetical short list, which is led, I've heard, by Iowa State's Fred Hoiberg and broadcaster Steve Kerr.

All of this will come to a head soon, and it will be decided by Lacob, in the end.

If the Warriors keep Jackson, they will almost certainly have to avoid a lame-duck situation next year and give him an extension this summer.

And Jackson will not come cheaply as he did three years ago, I guarantee you that.

Maybe that's exactly what Lacob found out last offseason, by the way, and maybe that's what stopped everything back then.

And why the odds are currently pointing to Jackson's departure at the end of the playoff run, I'd say.

The two sides aren't in love with each other any more, and I think they first started to realize the big and little details of that last summer.

Contact Tim Kawakami at tkawakami@mercurynews.com.