Isiah Thomas: ‘Never say Never’ on returning to Knicks
Just hours after Donnie Walsh announced he was stepping down as Knicks’ president, Isiah Thomas uttered the words that all Knicks fans fear: "Never say never about anything," Thomas said on ESPN’s "SportsCenter" Friday night when asked what he would do if Knicks owner James Dolan were to call him about replacing Walsh. "All my doors are open."
HoopsVibe`s Very Quick Call: I`m not sure if Isiah Thomas is a Justin Bieber fan.
Thomas surely made the Madison Square Garden faithful shriek when declaring he`d ‘Never Say Never’ on returning to the New York Knicks.
These weren`t shrieks of joy from preteens. These were shrieks of horror from dedicated hoop fans.
Knick-nation knew Donnie Walsh, who the club cut ties with yesterday, wasn`t perfect. The veteran spent years clearing cap space to sign LeBron James, but ended up with Amar`e Stoudemire.
They respected Dolan for leading the team back to the playoffs. Most importantly, the organization was no longer a laughingstock.
There were no lawsuits; there were no curious interviews with the team`s star; there was no letting the coach twist in the wind for months; there were no disgraceful contracts; and the owner wasn`t allowed to wreck his toy.
The soap opera had ended. Sanity had returned. Or, so we thought.
Owner James Dolan didn`t like the power Walsh had. So he played hardball on an extension. He demanded that Walsh, going forward, would report to him.
Dolan knew Walsh would never accept this. And Dolan achieved what many believed was his true objective: he forced Walsh out.
This, of course, opens the door for Thomas to return. Officially. Here’s the question: did he ever leave?
Some claim the Hall of Fame guard was always working to undermine Walsh, taking credit for signing Stoudemire and engineering the Carmelo Anthony trade.
Coaching at Florida International University is a sabbatical from his real gig as Dolan’s buddy. Thomas reportedly worked out prospects for the Knicks and acted as a consultant, even if this was a violation of NCAA policy.
New York should prepare for Thomas’ return. Their shrieks will be louder and more painful than preteens at a Bieber concert.
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