Isiah Thomas showed up on Dan Patrick’s radio show today to try to set a few things straight. (By the way, plenty of tickets are still available to see the Florida International Golden Panthers in action this fall!)
During his chat, the ex-Knicks coach & prez wanted fans in New York to know that he did everything he could to try and succeed in Madison Square Garden. And before you gothrowing more stones in his direction, Isiah would like to point out that he’s not the only one who couldn’t make it at MSG:
“I tried as hard as any human being could possibly try to win in New York,” Thomas said. “I gave it everything that I could give, and I didn’t succeed. I, like many others, have failed there. There’s a long list of us that hasn’t been able to deliver the championship that New York wants. From Pat Riley to Larry Brown to Lenny Wilkins, Jeff Van Gundy, Don Nelson. We all came in here and tried to give it as much as we could humanly, possibly give and we all failed.”
So if you bash Isiah, do you not bash Pat ‘n’ Larry ‘n’ Lenny ‘n’ Jeff ‘n’ Don?
Speaking of throwing others under the bus, Thomas also talked about being hospitalized after overdosing on sleeping pills - a medical emergency that he first pinned on his daughter. Turns out it was all just a big misunderstanding:
Thomas said he wasn’t trying to kill himself and there was confusion that day because both he and his daughter had gone to the hospital. At the end of the day, he was protecting his family, and that’s why it took so long for him explain what happened.
And if you’re looking for a reason, why not blame the Big Apple?
“Now, did I have a hard time here in New York? Yeah. Did I have some down moments? Yeah. I’m human. Everything that I’ve been through, everything that has been written and said, a lot of people knew it wasn’t true. However, you have to deal with it. While you have tough skin, you have sensitive skin too.”
So maybe taking the FIU job actually makes sense. Isiah admitted he wanted to get back into the game, saying “I didn’t care if it was at FIU or if it was with the Chicago Bulls, I just love the gym. And again, basketball is basketball.” And a coaching position with a hardly-regarded mid-major program is bound to have a lot less pressure (and less snarky media coverage) than working for a NBA squad in one of the biggest cities in the world.
Did I mention that Golden Panthers tix are still available?