Elster's World

Thursday, June 22, 2006

Unfathomable

ESPN.com Is reporting that the New York Knicks have fired coach Larry Brown after one miserable season in New York and replaced him with non other than the man partially responsible for the destruction of the Knicks - Isaiah Thomas.

I say partially responsible for much of the blame must fall upon Horror Show Number 2 - James Dolan.

Don't get me wrong. Larry Brown's actions this past year have been reprehensible. This is by far the worst coaching job of his career. He alienated his "star" player (Stephon Marbury), didn't define roles for players, used too many people in the rotation, constantly sniped at players through the press - the list goes on and on.

But Brown is one the greatest coaches in NBA history. Does it really make sense to think that he suddenly lost all of his skills? Rather, look at the roster Thomas had assembled for him. Filled with rich, past-their-prime malcontents, they didn't play hard, didn't play defense, didn't rebound and didn't protect the rim. You don't win unless you do that. Midseason trades for Jalen Rose? For Steve Francis? What was Thomas thinking? But when you realize that while Thomas was a great player, certainly one of the top 5 or so point guards in NBA history - he was a fair coach at best, responsible for the destruction of the CBA and not a particularly great GM for the Toronto Raptors - then his track record with the Knicks makes more sense. He's simply a terrible GM prone to making horrible trades and stupid free agent signings (see Jerome James free agent signing and the Eddy Curry fiasco which cost the Knicks this year's number 2 pick in the draft and a possible flip flop of next year's number 1).

Which begs the question - what the Hell is Dolan thinking? Word is, he values loyalty over everything else. While Brown sniped to the press about the roster - implicitly attacking Dolan and Thomas for putting together this collection of horrendously mismatched parts - Thomas was the ever present faithful one. And for this, Knick fans are about to pay a terrible price. The team is a mess that will take years to recover from and Dolan is to blame for this. A smart owner would not have allowed Thomas to add more salary this past season by bringing in Marbury clone Francis or a player like Rose. The Knicks had something like 20 million dollars coming off the books, but instead they traded that away for more dead weight. The Knick cap hell will continue for at least a good 3-5 more years.

I could go on. My (almost) hatred of the Dolan/Thomas combo is pretty intense. But what's the point? It won't change the fact that supposed savior Brown is out after one years and Thomas is not the man leading his own sinking ship. Pathetic.

5 Comments:

  • Watch the Pistons resign Brown.

    By Blogger Jack's Shack, at 10:09 PM  

  • I don't think it will happen - there is too much animosity there. Brown upset the players by courting the Cleveland job during the playoff run and he upset Dumars and the Detroit owner as well. Though it would obviously be a good fit.

    By Blogger Elster, at 10:13 PM  

  • + Brown's huge contract which they will have to pay at least half, if not the whole thing. I hope that Thomas is buried along with "his team" when they only manage to win 5-10 games. It is almost laughable how the Dolan/Thomas team keep creating disaster after disaster. I mean this is New York not hicksville. More later.

    By Blogger bellanny, at 1:26 AM  

  • Agreed. There is a fantastic, scathing areticle by Selena Roberts in today's NY Times. Worth a look if you can get it. It basically kills Dolan for the mess.

    By Blogger Elster, at 9:17 AM  

  • I definitely will. Thanks for the tip.

    By Blogger bellanny, at 11:25 AM  

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