- The Washington Times - Tuesday, March 21, 2006

For the New York Knicks, it’s not bad enough that they’re just plain bad. They insist on losing their dignity in the process.

The Knicks (19-46) are what they are: the second-worst team in basketball, which is bad enough.

Isiah Thomas built this team, Larry Brown coached it up and there it is: horrible, unwatchable, selfish basketball.

Then Stephon Marbury had to go and ruin it all with words.

“I went into this year trying to do something, to put myself in a situation where we can win, OK?” Marbury said last week after a two-game winning streak. “To help the team win games. Unfortunately, that didn’t happen. So what do I do now as far as the way I play? I go back to playing like Stephon Marbury, aka Starbury. I haven’t been Starbury this year. I’ve been some other dude this year.”

What Starbury or this other dude is saying is: I can’t work like this.

Brown felt, well, similarly: “We’re 17 and 45. You want to say because we don’t have freedom that’s why we’re losing?

“That’s fine. You can say that all you want. But the reality is we foul more than any team in the league,” he continued.

“Since the fifth week of the season, we’re the second-worst field-goal percentage defensive team in the league. We turn the ball over more than any team in the league. We’re close to the fewest blocked shots of any team in the league.

“Now you want freedom? How are you gonna have freedom with those stats?”

What Brown is saying is twofold. First, the Knicks are really bad. Second: I can’t work like this, either.

Thomas has been too busy with non-basketball issues to address just how bad the Knicks are. He again denied sexual harassment charges last week, calling Anucha Browne Sanders’ lawsuit “meritless.”

He is in no position to help his no-account team.

Brown and Marbury are in no position to criticize each other. The Knicks are bad, and there is plenty of blame to go around.

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