Although the New York Knicks, James Dolan and Charles Oakley have seemingly squashed their beef, the story is still a hot topic, and Draymond Green wants in on it.
You don’t have to like him, but Green is one of the most NBA’s most conscious players, and he’s never been one to bite his tongue. Since the incident between the Knicks’ owner and their former enforcer, things have blown over, and Dolan has lifted the ban that he initially placed on Oakley. However, it didn’t come without extreme backlash.
Before coming to his senses, Dolan had the worst PR plan possible, and he executed it with surgeon-like precision. The narrative is still fresh, and Green went on his “Dray Day” podcast to chat about the incident with the Bay Area News Group’s Marcus Thompson, which was transcribed by Yahoo! Sports’ Ben Rohrbach:
“The man is a legend. Treat him as such. First off, this is Charles Oakley. Why is he buying a ticket to the game? If I’m not mistaken, Dolan owned that team when he was playing. It wasn’t a problem when he was speaking out then. It wasn’t a problem when he was protecting their superstars then. So, if it wasn’t a problem then, when he was doing it for y’all, why is it all of a sudden now when he’s speaking out on something he don’t like? And now you want to disown him from your entire organization?
“That’s a slave mentality. You’re doing it for me, it’s all good, but now you’re doing it against me — or not necessarily against me, but you’re speaking out against my organization — it’s not good anymore? That’s a slave mentality — a slave-master mentality. That’s ridiculous.
“It was all fine and dandy when he was laying people out, taking fines and all this stuff for your organization, but now all of a sudden when he says something that he feels, it’s a problem. I disagree with that. I definitely think, like I said, that that’s a slave-master mentality.”
Oakley spent 10 seasons with the Knicks from 1988-89 to 1997-98 and, although Dolan didn’t own the team, everyone in New York State knew what Oakley meant to the Knicks. Becuase of the fans’ undying love for him, the situation was wholly lopsided, and almost no support was shown toward Dolan, which was how it should’ve been.
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What transpired at the Garden that night was terrible for all involved — Oakley, the Knicks and Dolan — but the flubbed attempt at rectifying it is what made everyone in Dolan’s camp look bad.
The Knicks’ owner, a recovering alcoholic, questioned Oakley’s sobriety and suggested that he get help if he needs it.
Comparing this to slave times is going to ruffle feathers, but it’s Draymond. And he’s not wrong.
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