In recent seasons, Buss and Jackson sat together for parts of Knicks and Lakers games at Staples Center. However, a romantic relationship between top executives of two of the NBA’s most glamorous franchises was a source of much speculation in the NBA. Jackson was persistently linked to the Lakers as a possible replacement for Jim Buss and, potentially, General Manager Mitch Kupchak, if Jeanie Buss decided to make a change after several years of losing.While Jackson kept his home in Playa del Rey, he lived primarily on Manhattan’s West Side, not far from Madison Square Garden.“We miss a lot of things together, and it’s a sacrifice,” Buss told USA Today in June 2015. “But I think anybody who has been in a long-term relationship knows that if one person isn’t happy, then it’s hard for the relationship to be happy.On Tuesday, she was not in her regular Staples Center seat: second row, across from the Lakers bench. It was a position she took up when she and Jackson began dating.Jackson has been married twice before and has five children. Buss was married to former volleyball standout Steve Timmons from 1990-93. LOS ANGELES >> Phil Jackson and Lakers president and co-owner Jeanie Buss have ended their engagement after nearly two decades together, the couple announced Tuesday night on Twitter.Jackson coached the Lakers from 1999-2004 and 2005-11, guiding the franchise to five championships. Since 2014, he has been the president of the New York Knicks.In a joint statement, posted to Jackson’s Twitter account during the first quarter of the Lakers’ game against the Utah Jazz.“With mutual love and respect we have decided to end our engagement. With the nature of our professional obligations and the geographic distance between us, sustaining the relationship has been difficult. We have shared many wonderful moments through the years, and we expect to remain supportive of each other in the future.” Newsroom GuidelinesNews TipsContact UsReport an Error Buss retweeted the statement and added, “Nothing but love and respect for this man.”The two began dating in 1999 and became engaged around Christmas in 2012. In the foreword to Buss’ 2010 memoir, “Laker Girl,” Jackson wrote that she and Buss first bonded while waiting for a delayed flight from Vancouver, B.C., following league meetings the summer before his first season with the Lakers. “Let’s just say that was the beginning of something special,” he wrote.Jackson, who coached the Chicago Bulls to six championships in the 1990s, was a candidate to replace Mike Brown in 2012 and return for a third stint coaching the Lakers, but was passed over in favor of Mike D’Antoni.In 2014, Jackson signed a signed a five-year, $60 million contract to take over the Knicks.