Boston Red Sox

Odds and Ends (07.07.06): Manny Ramirez called owners "White Devils"

From the new book by Seth Mnookin called Feeding the Monster, comes this little nugget:

stat analyst Bill James did a study in the 2003 season in which Rami rez was cited for half of the 60 instances in which Sox players did not hustle, and this spring, after the Sox did not trade him yet again after he’d asked to be dealt, Rami rez directed a rant at the owners in which he referred to them as “[expletive] white devils.

Man, that’s just Manny being Manny racist. (Story via Drunken Bleachers Blog)

In other news…

[Cincinnati Enquirer]: Shackelford out of jail, in minors

[NY Daily News]: Isiah’s already eyeing playoffs

[]: Minor-leaguer killed just after release

[USA Today]: Damn, even punters are cheating

[Seattle Times]: Bland ESPN has lost its way

New York Knicks

James Dolan is the worst owner is sports

When people talk about bad owners, it usually conjures up the image of the miserly bean counter who won’t spend any money to make the team any better. However, sometimes it’s the guy who will spend any amount of money but has no clue what he’s doing and continually sabotages the team with his mistakes. The poster boy for clueless ownership is James Dolan.

At a press conference today, Dolan cemented his status with the following:

  • Told the press that Isiah Thomas had one year to turn the team around or he will be fired. Something which Thomas didn’t appear to be aware of.
  • Said that Larry Brown wanted to release 6 players whose contracts totalled $180M. Among the 6 were Steve Francis, Stephon Marbury, and Jerome James. Note that the NBA has guaranteed contracts.
  • Said that wanting to release those 6 players was Larry Brown’s way of forcing Dolan to fire him. Accused Brown of having no intention of coaching more than one year when he signed the five year contract with the Knicks.

Let’s just focus on his ultimatum to Isiah Thomas shall we? It’s fine to put Isiah on notice in private but calling him out in public? First, it puts undue pressure on Isiah and will become a press conference question after every game in the second half of the season. Second, how is Isiah supposed to motivate his team (we actually don’t think he can anyway) if, say, they are struggling by the all-star break and the players know that he’ll get fired by the end of the season. Why bother busting you hump for a coach who won’t be there? They didn’t do it for Larry Brown, who’s actually a good coach, they won’t do it for Isiah Thomas.

We can’t wait for the vegas over/under on number of Knicks wins next season. We’re going to peg it at 25.

[NY Post]: Thomas gets fair warning
[NY Daily News]: Dolan places Isiah on deck

New York Knicks

Larry Brown Fired! Isiah Thomas takes over Team Titanic


After months of speculation, the Knicks made it official today and fired Larry Brown after just one year. Taking over will be Isiah Thomas who now wears three hats: coach, GM, sexual harasser.

The buyout of Brown’s contract could cost the Knicks as much as $40M. James Dolan issued this statement.

Larry has had a long and storied career. We hired him last summer with the expectation that he would be with the Knicks for a long time. Sometimes decisions work and sometimes they don’t. After careful consideration, despite the best intentions from everyone involved, this current structure did not work for us last season and I did not think it was going to improve next season.

We’re waiting for Vegas to post the over/under on the number of wins for the Knicks next season but one thing we know for sure, NY residents can expect a rise in Cablevision prices. Meanwhile, in Boston, Philly, New Jersey, and Toronto, coaches and GMs rejoice.

[ESPN]: Knicks fire Brown, name Thomas new coach

New York Knicks

Just when you thought Team Titanic couldn’t get worse

Who’s the sucker?

MSG Chairman James Dolan is reportedly going to buy out Larry Brown’s $50M contract and have Isiah Thomas coach the team. If the 2005-2006 season (23-59) for the New York Knicks was like hitting the iceberg, then this news is like a meteor striking the ship while capsized.

We laugh at the Yankees for paying about $2M per win but if Brown gets bought out for the entire amount, that works out to about $2.2M per win just to pay the coach. Money, meet toilet.

Let’s talk about Isiah Thomas first. Here’s a guy who couldn’t coach a talented Indian Pacers team out of the first round of the playoffs, who got dismissed by the Pacers, and who bankrupted and destroyed an entire league. Now Dolan wants to get rid of his hall of fame coach so that Zeke can get even less out of the league’s highest payroll? If Isiah Thomas gets the job, it’s only a matter of time before Steve Francis and Stephon Marbury fight each other to the death to decide who runs the asylum. The rest of the Atlantic division must be rejoicing at this news.

Now, let’s talk about Larry Brown. Has anyone else in the league been able to get paid by more people for doing less? He got Detroit to pay him $7M to leave and now he’s going to get NY to pay him up to $40M to take a job elsewhere. Here’s a note to the kids everywhere. Your goal in life is not to make a lot of money. Your goal in life is to get such a good reputation that you can screw over franchise after franchise and still have people lining up to hire you. Sacramento, you’re next up.

[NY Daily News]: Money must grow
in Dolan’s Garden