After throwing nearly $50 million away on Stephon Marbury, Eddy Curry, Jerome James and Malik Rose, who may combine to contribute only Rose’s garbage time minutes, the Knicks are finally making a sound business decision: they’re recouping their Marbury costs, one game at a time.
Get your notepad ready, because a series of events this complex and asinine could only happen under James Dolan. First the Knicks told Marbury he wouldn’t play, but they’d still pay him. Then, shorthanded on Wednesday, they told Marbury he had to play, since they were paying him. He then refused to play, mad because they hadn’t been playing him. Now they’re refusing to pay for his refusal to play. Got all that? Now you’ve caught up on the last week of As the Garden Turns. (All this, plus Magic throwing Isiah under the bus, after the jump.)
“A player’s central obligation is to provide his professional services when called upon,” Knicks president Donnie Walsh said in a statement. “Because he refused the coach’s request to play in the team’s last game, we had no choice but to impose disciplinary action.”
NEWSDAY reports that Marbury will be docked two game checks, which works out to about $400,000. That ain’t chump change. I think this is a viable strategy to recover some of that albatross of a contract. I see them sending prostitutes to his hotel room, then “catching” him in the act. That’s a fine. Maybe planting some drugs in his bag at the airport? That’s a fine. Poisoning his sushi, KGB-style, so he can’t play? You better believe that’s a fine.
Starbury’s teammates have had enough. Quentin Richardson, the mic is yours:
“He hasn’t played with us all year,” Richardson added. “Regardless of what you have going on with the organization or what you have going on with your coach or whatever. You’re not going to allow your teammates to be left out there the way we were basically being left out there.
“This is directed at us regardless if you’re trying to stick it to whoever you’re trying to stick it to. At the end of the day we’re shorthanded, people are hurt. Once again, I don’t pay attention to (Stephon) because I don’t look at him as a teammate anyway.”
Meanwhile, elsewhere in Babylon Over Penn Station, fallout continues regarding the architect of this mess, Isiah Thomas. Turns out it was Magic Johnson who recommended him for the job. It’s saying something when Johnson, who still won’t admit “The Magic Hour” had any problems, knows he dropped the ball with Zeke.
“I couldn’t recommend him again because he’s failed a couple times now,” Johnson, who won five championships with the Los Angeles Lakers, said in an interview with Bloomberg Radio’s “On the Ball” program airing Nov. 29. “So I would probably have to just pass on that one.”