Dolan And The Knicks Mishandled Oakley Situation From The start!
Charles Oakley was not a scoring or stat machine when he played for the Knicks but he was the inspirational leader and toughness of the team. Growing up I watched Charles Oakley protect the wrest of the team by playing physical and doing all the dirty work no other player was either willing or capable of doing. So forgive me if I hold Oakley in very high regard as a fan. That being said it isn't why I firmly believe Knicks owner James Dolan and the Madison Square Garden Security are so very wrong here.
Let's start with the claims that Charles Oakley was loud and rowdy and there were"dozens" of witnesses to his actions. Oakley was ejected with more than six minutes left in the first period. Just what could he have done in such a short time that merited his ejection? Not to mention doesn't a Knicks legend like Oakley deserve a warning before getting the boot?
Let's get back to the "Dozens" of witnesses. Where are they? Who are they? during all this media backlash should Dolan and the Knicks produce one or more to prove they are in the right?
Now here's what really bothers me above all else, why embarrass the man? Let's say for the sake of the argument Oakley was so out of line he needed to leave, shouldn't you do this far more discreetly? This public shaming of one of the fans favorite Knicks comes off spiteful and petty. To prove my point of this spite, look at this video from last nights Rangers' game where MSG security attempts to kick out a fan over a "Free Oakley" chant.
Now yes this guy is a jerk but he shouldn't be kicked out for a "Free Oakley" chant.