Photo: Jim Hartney/Flickr
Let’s say you’re the New York Knicks. You have to choose between two players for the final spot on your 15-man roster. Here are your options:Shawne Williams: A 6-9 forward with career averages of 5.2 PPG and 2.4 RPG, Williams hasn’t played an NBA game since January of 2009 and has been arrested twice this year—once for selling a controlled substance and the second time for driving on a suspended licence (while also carrying marijuana and a loaded gun.)
Patrick Ewing Jr.: Son of New York Knick legend Patrick Ewing.
Keep in mind, the 15th man is a cheap, expendable option who will ride the bench almost every single night of the season, doing nothing more than handing out towels to veterans and only playing in blowouts.
So who do you think the Knicks chose? That’s right: Williams.
Yes, Ewing Jr. is not a serviceable NBA player. But he does share a name and bloodline with one of the most-beloved players in the history of the franchise. (Williams shares an agent with current Knick superstar Amar’e Stoudemire.)
The Knicks don’t need another troubled swingman who can’t drive a car while sober and associates with murder suspects. They need fans. They need players to market to those fans. They need to remind frustrated and angry New Yorkers that the basketball team they once loved was at one time exciting and entertaining.
They need Patrick Ewing. (Junior.) Neither one of these players will help them on the floor, but one could make a difference, however small, in fan-team relations. Unfortunately, owner James Dolan and GM Donnie Walsh (who drafted Williams out of college four years ago) don’t care what fans think about anything.
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