NEW YORK — New York Knicks owner James Dolan, who has put the New York Liberty up for sale, stated he could not rule out selling the Knicks if the fitting supply got here alongside.
Dolan, who’s chairman of Madison Sq. Backyard and likewise owns the New York Rangers, instructed ESPN’s Ian O’Connor in a wide-ranging interview launched Monday that there have been “feelers” of provides upward of $5 billion for the Knicks, however that “nobody has come by means of with a bona fide supply.”
“You hear numbers on a regular basis,” Dolan instructed ESPN when requested about selling the team. “… I feel individuals have despatched feelers out, however by no means any that have been pursued. Yeah, [the feelers are] round that quantity [$5 billion], however these issues, it is like a inventory value. It is solely vital for those who’re going to purchase or promote.”
For 2 stormy many years, New York’s most well-known sports activities enigma has lorded over the Knicks, the Rangers and Madison Sq. Backyard with out apology.
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Dolan, 63, stated he loves the Knicks and Rangers, “however you continue to have a accountability to your shareholders.”
“You could have a accountability because the man who runs the place to ship on that for them, that is being open and clear. And so in that place, I may by no means say that I would not consider selling the Knicks. Now, my household is just not in that place, and they’re the bulk shareholders. They maintain the vast majority of the vote. … As a majority owner, I do not need to promote, both. As the top of the general public firm, you’ll be able to’t say you’ll be able to’t promote, as a result of you then’re telling your shareholders that your personal private emotions about your belongings are extra vital than their cash. They usually won’t make investments with you for those who try this.”
Dolan took over as chairman of Madison Sq. Backyard in 1999. The Knicks made the NBA Finals in his first yr. They have not been again since because the team has gone by means of seven team presidents and 12 head coaches — solely two of whom (Jeff Van Gundy and Mike Woodson) have had profitable data.
The latest failure — the three-year reign of team president Phil Jackson from 2014 to ’17 — yielded an 80-166 document. Dolan stated he thinks Jackson, who won 11 NBA championships as a coach with Chicago and the Los Angeles Lakers, failed within the entrance workplace as a result of he could not persuade the team to purchase into his trademark triangle offense.
“I feel he acquired ‘yessed’ so much,” Dolan stated, “I feel they’d be beneath their breath going, ‘This isn’t an incredible concept,’ and he acquired into battle with some gamers over it. However I feel he tried arduous to get his system in. I simply do not suppose he ever acquired it in.”
Dolan additionally counts himself a fan of present ESPN analyst Van Gundy, who was the Knicks’ head coach when Dolan took over in 1999 and resigned early within the 2001-02 season. Dolan stated he hadn’t heard that Van Gundy just lately instructed ESPN that he needed the Knicks job, however he could not argue with the team’s hiring of David Fizdale.
“He needed the job?” Dolan stated. “Look, I will do no matter’s vital to assist the team. If Scott [Perry] and Steve [Mills] stated Jeff’s the fitting man, nice. Nevertheless it was actually their name. I did not meet anyone else apart from Fiz. They stated, ‘Look, he is our decide. I would like you to meet him.’ So I did. I wasn’t concerned within the choice course of in any respect.”
Dolan stated he acquired out of the day-to-day operation of the Knicks when he employed Jackson, including: “I grew to become satisfied that I did not suppose I may add something to it.”
The interview with O’Connor was a uncommon one for Dolan, who sat for two hours to focus on basketball, enterprise, his authorized battles, his relationship with Harvey Weinstein and extra — together with his 25 years of sobriety after he stated he almost killed himself as a younger man with alcohol and medicines.