Isiah Thomas’ recent delusional ramblings remarks about someday succeeding current Knicks team president Donnie Walsh (above) were roundly mocked in this space and numerous others. In the considered view of Sports Illustrated’s Ian Thomsen, Walsh should give thanks each time Zeke makes another moronic public statement ; there’s no better distraction for Knicks problems that have nothing to do with Thomas. “Why is Isiah still the big story in New York even though Walsh has been running the franchise for a relatively long time now?” asks Thomsen, who answers his own question by citing the Knicks’ last minute bid to involve Thomas in their attempts to woo LeBron James. There’s a perception, rightly or wrongly, that Thomas is at least as close to James Dolan as Joe Walsh.
For years and years there has been talk of the toxic environment Thomas is said to have created in New York. But if it was so toxic then why hasn’t Walsh replaced more of Thomas’ front-office staff? I’ve talked to Walsh about this many times since Thomas’ departure. And a couple weeks ago, Yahoo! Sports’ Adrian Wojnarowski revealed that Knicks director of East Coast scouting, Rodney Heard, a Thomas hire, may have organized illegal workouts of potential draft picks on behalf of the organization over the past four years.
Thomas has been vilified in the aftermath coverage of this story, and there is nothing wrong with that criticism. Thomas should be held accountable for his staff. Yet, Walsh has avoided criticism surrounding Heard, even though Walsh chose to re-sign him to a new contract.
If the Knicks truly want to silence their former boss, then they should assemble a roster that can win 50 games. No one will be talking about Isiah Thomas then.