No NBA team is as paranoid about its image as the New York Knicks. Which is saying something.
That extended to Knicks legend, newly minted Hall of Famer and sometimes MSG Network employee Bernard King. Two tweets appeared on King’s timeline Monday:
“If Carmelo’s shoulder is hurting that bad – work the paint- drive and dish – become a facilitator – it’s a TEAM game
“The Knicks MUST move the ball more and take the open shots – must stop heaving up bad shots because the shot clock is running out.”
We would have embedded those tweets, but King’s entire twitter account has since been deleted. Wiped off the face of the earth. And King denies he made those tweets. The New York Post explains.
A Knicks official told The Post last night an unnamed King friend and co-worker writes on the account and King “disagrees with the sentiment.” King, who now lives in Atlanta and has worked for MSG Network on its post-game show in the postseason, was unhappy with the friend and shut the account down.
Disagrees with the sentiment? That Carmelo Anthony needs to attack the paint and the Knicks have to move the ball better and stop running so many isolation plays?
If he disagrees with that he would be the only Knicks fan that does. And let’s hope the Knicks coaching staff agrees with that sentiment or Game 2 Tuesday night will be a repeat of Game 1.
But this is the way the Knicks (and other NBA teams) can be — nobody within the organization can dare to be critical of the star player or organization. Everything has to be spun, every decision has to be seen as a positive, now and forever.
I was lucky, I grew up listening to Lakers legend Chick Hearn call games — and in Los Angeles we have the great Dodgers broadcaster Vin Scully, too. Both of them wouldn’t hesitate to call out a player making a mistake or say it when the team was just awful. It wasn’t spiteful in tone, it wasn’t angry, it was just the truth. And fans respected the broadcaster and the team more for it. Sadly those days seem long gone.