Knicks deadline to keep Donnie Walsh: April Fools' Day (Knicks jokes write themselves)


Thumbnail image for Knicks_logo.gifBy April Fools’ Day next year, Knicks owner James Dolan needs to decide if he wants to keep Donnie Walsh or jettison him and go with someone else. Like some sort of consultant who has experience as a general manager. If he can find anyone like that around the organization.

Sadly, none of this is a joke. Chris Sheridan has the information at ESPNNewYork.

A league source told that Walsh’s four-year contract with the Knicks as team president includes a clause designating March 31, 2011, as the day the team must decide whether it will pick up the option on Walsh’s fourth year.

By then, the Knicks will be some 70 games into the 2010-11 season. And owner James Dolan will have a better idea whether he wants to continue allowing Walsh to be the architect of the franchise as it heads into a summer in which Carmelo Anthony, should be become an unrestricted free agent, will be the No. 1 player on New York’s wish list.

Sheridan goes on to say that Dolan is not going return Isiah Thomas to any position of power. However, Thomas still is the guy Dolan listen to, the guy he called to help recruit LeBron James and Amare Stoudemire this summer. He trusts him.

That is a position of power, no matter what the title is.

And by April Fools’ Day next year, he could have a lot more.

James Harden: “I am the best player in the league. I believe that.”

James Harden, Stephen Curry
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James Harden was the MVP last season — if you ask his fellow NBA players.

The traditional award (based on a media vote) went to Stephen Curry (in the closest vote in four years), and that was the right call (in my mind). But from the time it happened Harden did not buy it. And he still doesn’t buy it. In the least — and he’s using that as fuel for this season. That’s what he told Fran Blinebury over at

“I am the best player in the league. I believe that,” he said. “I thought I was last year, too.”

Well, it’s a more realistic claim than Paul George’s.

“But that award means most valuable to your team. We finished second in the West, which nobody thought we were going to do at the beginning of the year even when everybody was healthy. We were near the top in having the most injuries. We won our division in a division where every single team made the playoffs.

“There’s so many factors. I led the league in total points scored, minutes played. Like I said, I’m not taking anything away from Steph, but I felt I deserved the Most Valuable Player. That stays with me.”

That’s very Kobe Bryant of you to turn that into fuel. Defining the MVP Award is an annual discussion that nobody agrees on.

I could get into how Harden was the old-school, traditional stats MVP, how that ignores how Steve Kerr used Curry, and how that opened up the Warriors’ offense to championship levels. Curry put up numbers, but he was also the distraction, the bright star that Kerr used to open up looks for Klay Thompson, Draymond Green, and others. Curry’s strength was not just what he did with the ball in his hands, but his gravity to draw defenders even when he didn’t. Did the Warriors stay healthier than the Rockets? No doubt. Should Curry be penalized for that?

It’s simple for Harden — if he can put up those numbers again, if he can be the fulcrum of a top offense, he will be in the discussion for MVP again. And, if he can lead the Rockets beyond the conference finals, nobody will talk about that MVP snub anyway.