bad sports, good sports

Bad sports, good sports: New York Knicks owner rips long-time fan

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Professional sports team owner would seem to be a pretty cushy job, don’t you think? I mean, sure, there is likely some pressure to put a winning product on the field, epecially in the larger, sports-crazed cities like New York, Philadelphia, Boston, etc. Outside of that, though, the owner watches his or her fortune grow and grow, sometimes into numbers that end in “billion,” while getting to hobnob with the athletes, celebrities, and politicians. It’s remarkable how often these guys screw this up. New York Knicks owners James Dolan seems to be having a tough time of it, for example.

Dolan, the chairman and CEO of Cablevision, the much-hated television cable company, is also the head man for the Knicks. He may have put alcohol in his past, but he has not done the same with his temper or his arrogance. The Knicks have been brutal during his stewardship, but he continues to act as if he is doing the fans a favor by fielding a team.

In the age of social media, ripping a fan is a very bad idea, and some of these guys continue to not understand that. A Knicks fan who has rooted for the team for over sixty years recently sent an email to Dolan. It was strongly worded but not profane, and nothing in it was really inaccurate. He basically said what a lot of fans have said, which is that he would like to see the team sold to someone who would do things that made more sense, as far as trying to win. Dolan replied with this beaut of a message:

Mr Bierman

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.


James Dolan

Wow. First, what an astonishingly poorly written email that is. Punctuation, grammar, and spelling errors everywhere. This man is the CEO of a huge company? Beyond that, can you believe that is the response this guy sent? Talk about a complete lack of sense…how did he not know that this would become public? The recipient’s son sent the email to Deadspin, and the website was quite happy to share it with the world, as you’d imagine.

I am not exactly sure I know what I think a team owner owes to the fans, as far as winning championships. I do know, though, that the fans deserve far more than scathing, badly written letters from an owner with anger management issues. I expect the league will have something to say about this before too long.

Bad sports, continued:

2) One week after his meltdown at the Phoenix Open, Tiger Woods had to withdraw during his first round at Torrey Pines due to continuing problems with his back.

3) Dallas Cowboys resident lowlife Joseph Randle continued his banner year this week by being slapped with a restraining order by his ex-girlfriend for allegedly threatening her, her friend, and his son.

4) Maybe it’s just me, but I don’t think I’d be cracking jokes in court if I were the lawyer of accused murderer and former New England Patriots tight end Aaron Hernandez. Last week, lawyer James Sultan, while questioning a police officer on the stand, asked if the officer had received training in “football deflation devices,” a reference to the recent controversy involving the Patriots and under inflated footballs. Hilarious.

5) Chris Paul is generally considered one of the most upstanding and respectable guys in the NBA. He is the president of the NBA Players Association, and has avoided negativity, for the most part. This wasn’t his best week, though. First, he was fined $25,000 after he criticized an official after a game against the Cleveland Cavaliers on Thursday night. A lot of attention was paid to that situation, as the official was Lauren Holtkamp, one of only two female officials in the league, and his comment that the job “might not be for her” was interpreted as sexist by some. Then, on Sunday, he made the foolish move of giving a stare to the Oklahoma City bench after he hit a jump shot right in front of them. The problem was that his team was down 20 points at the time. Thunder star Kevin Durant, standing by the bench, could clearly be seen pointing out that fact to Paul.

6) Former University of North Carolina head basketball coach Dean Smith died on Saturday. A legend in the sport, he was incredibly successful both on the court and off, winning 879 games during his 36 seasons at UNC while also having a huge impact on the lives of so many people that played and worked for him. He will be missed.

Good sports:

1) Right on the heels of Mike Krzyzewski becoming the first coach to win 1000 NCAA basketball games, Herb Magee, the head coach at Philadelphia University, became the second. Every one of his 1000 victories came at the school, accomplished over the last 48 seasons.

Bad sports, good sports appears early each week

Alan Spoll is a software quality assurance director from the suburbs of Philadelphia where he lives with his wonderful wife and children. He has spent his entire life as a passionate fan of the Eagles, Phillies, Sixers, Flyers, and Penn State. Recent Phillies success aside, you will understand his natural negativity. Follow me on Twitter - @DocAlan02
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