Anyone who knows anything about the New York Knicks knows that James Dolan is the worst owner in professional sports. His latest actions only reaffirmed how truly atrocious Dolan is at running the Knickerbockers.
I think it’s fair to assume that fans of teams who perform poorly like to vent their frustration out on ownership, whether that be through social media, nasty phone messages, or email.
In Dolan’s case, a disgruntled fan wrote what one would assume to be a typical email to a team owner complaining about years of hardship and losing.
Here’s the email from 73-year-old Irving Bierman to Dolan in regards to the Knicks struggles:
Subject: I have been a knicks fan since 1952
At one stage I thought that you did a wonderful thing when you acquired EVERYTHING from your dad. However, since then it has been ALL DOWN HILL. Your working with Isaiah Thomas & everything else regarding the Knicks. Bringing on Phil Jackson was a positive beginning, but lowballing Steve Kerr was a DISGRACE to the knicks. The bottom line is that you merely continued to interfere with the franchise.
As a knicks fan for in excess of 60 years, I am utterly embarrassed by your dealings with the Knicks. Sell them so their fans can at least look forward to growing them in a positive direction Obviously, money IS NOT THE ONLY THING. You have done a lot of utterly STUPID business things with the franchise. Please NO MORE.
Analysis: Whenever I talk with frustrated Knicks fans (I’m a Nets fan who grew up in New Jersey), this is essentially what I hear from them.
They rant about how the team hasn’t won a title since 1973, how Dolan enabled Isaiah Thomas who in turn basically ruined the franchise, and how he thought bringing in Phil Jackson would be an instant fix, all things Bierman pointed out in his email.
Here’s Dolan’s response:
You are a sad person. Why would anybody write such a hateful letter. I am.just guessing but ill bet your life is a mess and you are a hateful mess. What have you done that anyone would consider positive or nice. I am betting nothing. In fact ill bet you are negative force in everyone who comes in contact with you. You most likely have made your family miserable. Alcoholic maybe. I just celebrated my 21 year anniversary of sobriety. You should try it. Maybe it will help you become a person that folks would like to have around. In the mean while start rooting.for the Nets because the Knicks dont want you.
Analysis: The least Dolan could have done here is be grammatically correct. Where’s the period after (Mr) and the comma after (Bierman)? He threw in a random period after (I am) in the 3rd sentence, forgot an apostrophe in (ill) in two different instances, and one in (dont) near the end. He also forgot a dash in between (21 year), threw in another random period in between rooting and for, and a comma after (Respectfully). One would think that a CEO of entities that include Madison Square Garden, the New York Knicks, the New York Rangers, and Cablevision would know proper grammar. Why is an owner responding to a disgruntled fan’s email in the first place? Whoever Dolan’s PR person is dropped the ball, assuming he even checked with them first. The actual context of his response is nothing short of pathetic. He starts the response off by calling Bierman a sad person, says his life is a huge mess, that he’s never done anything nice for anyone, accuses him of being an alcoholic, and finishes him off by telling him to root for the Nets!!. Talk about unprofessional and generalized statements with no support or back-up. If Dolan really felt the need to respond, he should have said he understood Bierman’s frustration, that he continues to do anything and everything to make the Knicks a winner again, and maybe offered him the chance to watch a Knicks game in Dolan’s box. This was an opportunity for Dolan to start creating a better image for himself, and he blew it.
The Knicks have not won an NBA Championship since 1973, and after making the Finals in 1999 and the Conference Finals in 2000, have just one playoff series win since 2001.
It can be inferred that once Dolan’s finger prints really started being felt on the franchise after the carry over from the previous regime, the Knicks have been the biggest embarrassment in the NBA, and maybe professional sports.
This season, the Knicks have the league’s worst record at 10-42 and just clinched finishing the season with a losing record Monday night.
To top it all off, NBA Commissioner Adam Silver had no problem with Dolan’s actions.
“Jim is a consummate New Yorker. Jim got an unkind email and responded with an unkind email,” Silver said. Dolan will not be fined or punished in any way. You really can’t make this stuff up.