Dolan Continues To Destroy Knicks’ Tradition
by Eddie Mayrose
Fool me once, shame on you. Fool me twice…
Remember when we thought that failing to sign LeBron James was the worst that could happen to the Knicks this summer? Now come whispers from Madison Square Garden that owner James Dolan has taken under consideration the rehiring of Isiah Thomas, perhaps the most incompetent employee the Knicks have ever seen. Fans can only hope the rumor is a test balloon being floated by Little Jimmy to gauge public reaction. Prayers might be more appropriate.
Thomas’ bumbling as President and coach was epic. So much so, that, burying the Knicks in a salary cap mess that required the sacrifice of two full seasons to undo was not even close to his greatest failure. Nor was the trading away of so many draft picks that the roster was barren of any players that might have James consider coming to the Big Apple. Rather, it was his sexual harassment of team exec Anucha Brown Sanders that resulted in a settlement of $11 million and a blight on one of the league’s most storied franchises that is Isiah’s legacy.
So, if Dolan is actually mulling Thomas’ rehiring, if he continues to act like the little rich boy born on third yet thought he hit a triple, if he refuses to acknowledge that New Yorkers paying the league’s highest ticket prices deserve more than one playoff appearance per decade, why should any player, fan or league executive take him seriously?
“How Do You Like Me Now?”
Just a suggestion to those Yankee fans that turned a blind eye to A.J. Burnett’s largely disappointing ’09 season while vilifying Javier Vasquez as someone that couldn’t win in New York. It’s time to wipe the pie off of your faces. Oh, and Curtis Granderson is going to light up the second half, so, you might want to jump on that bandwagon while there’s still room.
New York Mets Stall As Manuel Mishandles ‘Pen
As the Mets limp home from the 2-9 West Coast trip that may have dashed their NL East title hopes, questions abound regarding Jerry Manuel’s handling of the team. First, despite a staggering total of twelve walk-off losses, Manuel still refuses to use his closer, Francisco Rodriguez, in a tie game on the road; instead, managing to the save rule for no reason other than managing to the save rule. Last Saturday, the Dodgers knocked off the Amazins on a 13th inning homer by James Loney off of Oliver Perez. Yes, the same Perez the Mets placed on the DL because they couldn’t find another reason to keep him off the mound. Yet, there was Perez in a pivotal game while Rodriguez, Manuel’s best available pitcher, languished in the bullpen simply because the score was tied.
Then there’s the case of Luis Castillo. While many factors contributed to the Mets’ slide, there’s no denying the correlation between Castillo’s presence and the team’s fortunes. The hottest stretch of the season coincided with the second baseman’s trip to the DL; just as his return marked the beginning of the current slump. Now, I understand that his ridiculous contract is untradable but anyone managing on a level above Tee Ball should realize that batting Castillo second is a recipe for disaster. He is no longer a Major League hitter, grounding out to shortstop with the frequency of a coach hitting infield practice.
Whether Manuel, or GM Omar Minaya for that matter, holds on to his job after this latest debacle is anyone’s guess. But, the skipper need only to look at the stubbornly flawed way in which he constructed his lineup as the reason for the pink slip that might come his way.