Sunday , May , 10 , 2009 C.Y. Ellis

Stephon Marbury: Bill Russell Cleansed My Basketball Soul

When Bill Russell told the New York Post last week that the Knicks may have damaged Stephon Marbury with their treatment of the current Celtics [team stats] point guard, there was a celebration on Coney Island.

For Marbury, this kind of recognition from one of the greatest names in the game was sheer vindication.

And for his family, there was an emotional release.

“My whole family, when they read it, were thanking God,” Marbury said following the Celtics’ video session and walkthrough at the team hotel yesterday. “When the legend speaks, you have to listen.

“Every word took a weight off my shoulders. He flushed out of my system all of this stuff I was feeling. He cleansed my spirit and my basketball soul. It was different because he was the one saying it. I mean, Bill Russell – when he speaks, there’s nothing more that has to be said.”