How’s this for good news/bad news? The good news is there’s been a Michael Ray Richardson sighting.
The bad news is, he was noticed by the Anti-Defamation League.
Just kidding! From the Albany Times-Union’s Brian Ettkin.
When Micheal Ray Richardson refused to shake an opposing coach’s hand after defeat, he was hypercompetitive. When he made a trade without telling the general manager first, he was a character, Maverick Ray. When he left the Patroons for two games to instruct at an NBA fantasy camp, it was just Micheal Ray being Micheal Ray. When he picked up more Ts than you’ll see in a month of “Wheel of Fortune” shows, he was a cannon so loose you couldn’t help but watch for the next explosion.
But when Richardson told a fan who heckled him early Tuesday night to “Shut the f— up,” and when near game’s end he shouted at another heckler, “Shut the f— up, you faggot,” you wondered how this guy keeps his job.
The answer: The general manager, Jim Coyne, is his friend and enabler. Coyne said he didn’t intend to speak to Richardson about his conduct. “He’s an adult and he should know better,” Coyne said. “He knows if he’s acting appropriately or inappropriately.”
After straddling the line between eccentrism and the outer limits of acceptable behavior, Richardson fell and tripped the wire a public figure can never cross. In addition to his slur against homosexuals and verbal beatdown of two fans during the game, Richardson made bigoted comments about Jews in an interview with the Times Union before it.
It started with an offcolor quip Richardson made in his office to two reporters when discussing the contract Coyne had offered him Monday to coach his USBL team.
“I’ve got big-time lawyers,” Richardson said. “I’ve got big-time Jew lawyers.”
When told that such an offhand remark might offend people because it plays to the stereotype that Jews are crafty and shrewd, Richardson replied: “Are you kidding me? They are. They’ve got the best security system in the world. Have you ever been to an airport in Tel Aviv? They’re real crafty. Listen, they are hated all over the world, so they’ve got to be crafty.”
Why are they hated? he was asked.
“They know that in this country the Jews are running it if you really think about it,” Richardson said. “I mean, which is not a bad thing, you know what I mean?”
“How are they running it?” he was asked.
“They got a lot of power in this world, you know what I mean?” he said. “Which I think is great. I don’t think there’s nothing wrong with it. If you look in most professional sports, they’re run by Jewish people. If you look at a lot of most successful corporations and stuff, more businesses, they’re run by Jewish. It’s not a knock, but they are some crafty people.”
There’s no truth to the rumor Albany intends to replace the suspended Richardson with Charlie Ward.