Wednesday, April 2, 2008

Rays of Hope at the Garden

I am probably the 1,376,498th person to write about Donnie Walsh taking over Basketball Operations for the Knicks. Surprisingly, it looks like Walsh was able to negotiate all the things that I thought were critical for success, but that I never thought Crazy Jimmy would ever agree to. So perhaps there is some light at the end of the tunnel for Knick fans. Yet the team is still fatally flawed with a mix of expensive, non-complimentary players. But the truth is that unless Isiah becomes the GM of another team, I have no idea how Walsh will be able to trade some of the terrible contracts to completely restructure the team.

But the most surprising thing of all was my reaction. Virtually nobody wished that Isiah would be fired more than me. For god sakes, the whole Isiah-Dolan regime created such a poisonous, life-sucking (not to mention team sucking) atmosphere, that I not only dropped my lifelong allegiance to the team out of protest, but I actively rooted for them to fail. Oh how I relished the Isiah death watch that started in November, enjoying each day that Isiah twisted in the wind and "Fire Isiah" chants fell from the rafters at the Garden. Good times.

But now that it seems Isiah's fate is sealed, watching his interview on ESPN after the hiring of Walsh was made official, I actually felt bad for the guy. To the very end he's toeing the company line and staying positive in his public statements (see video below). The trademark Isiah smile is still there, but you can see the resignation in his eyes.

Perhaps now he knows what it felt like to be Larry Brown for those 40 days and 40 nights.

Don't get me wrong. He can't be fired fast enough, but I'm not dancing on his grave like I thought I'd be.

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