Isiah Thomas & James Dolan speak! A real-time diary

12-22-03  The Knicks owner James Dolan(center) named Isiah Thomas(left) the new General Manager of the Knicks and Steve Mills(right) the President of Sports Operations for MSG.

HBO’s Real Sports with Bryant Gumbel featured an interview this week with Knick owner James Dolan and former antichrist Isiah Thomas. I wrote a real-time recap of the event, an interview which will seem familiar to anyone who’s listened to audio recordings of the Jonestown suicide (I have; highly recommend!).

Be warned: these two men inspire fear and loathing beyond most carbon-based beings’ capacity. It already led one long-time P&T reader to comment that I should “shut up.” Make sure you’re seated and not near any flammable material. Read at your own peril. 

Are you there, James? It’s me, a Knicks fan.

He playeth a stringed instrument while the Mecca burns...

He playeth a stringed instrument while the Mecca burns…

Over the weekend, Deadspin revealed an email exchange between Irving Bierman and James Dolan. Bierman has been a Knick fan for over 60 years. Dolan has owned the Knicks the past 15 years, which not coincidentally are the worst 15 years in Knick history. Bierman’s email to Dolan was frustrated, but civil. Dolan’s response was aloof, uppity, tone-deaf, and actually surprisingly rude, ending with him telling Bierman to stop following the Knicks and instead root for the Nets.

Today, P&T published a letter I’ve written to James Dolan, a letter crafted in the same style as the one he wrote to Bierman. If you’re a fan of the Knicks or the NBA, you should check it out. Hell, if you’re a fan of civility, check it out.

Why Phil Jackson? by Matthew Miranda

I’m not sure I want Phil Jackson to come back to the Knicks.

 Crazy, right? How could anyone who follows the New York Dipsy Doodles say such a thing? Phil Jackson won 2 titles playing for the Knicks and 11 more as coach of the Bulls and Lakers. The man trademarked #winning 20 years ago, long before Charlie Sheen did, back when Sheen was still someone we laughed with, rather than at.

Rumor has it Phil is “leaning toward” signing on with NY in an as-yet-undefined front office role. It doesn’t sound like he’d coach the team. Some stories suggest he’d work under Steve Mills; some say he’d work over him. Some say he’d be president of basketball operations, a la Pat Riley in Miami; some say he’d be like the Vice-President in the Senate, and pretty much just cast the deciding vote in case of a tie. Continue reading

NYK midseason (sorta) review of my preseason preview

Some year’s, the summer NBA offseason’s looked forward to even more than the onseason.

1996 was one of those years. Not only ‘cuz I’d just graduated from high school and my girlfriend’s parents worked late every night, leaving us free run of the house (and each other) the whole time. No, the ’96 offseason had been anticipated by Knick fans for a long time, after a disappointing season.

Bear in mind, back in the magical, Dolan-free years of the 90s, the Knicks could have a season where they advanced to the 2nd round, took a game from the 72-win Bulls and almost a second (stupid Rodman and his stupid assists to stupid Bill Wennington) and have it all considered a massive failure. These days, MSG throws a confetti party for less than that.

Hate her all you want. She's had a better decade than the Knicks.

Hate her all you want. She’s had a better decade than the Knicks.

Continue reading