James Dolan might be the worst owner in all of sports. The Knicks haven’t had a winning record since the Harlem Shake was around. He gets into petty arguments with team legends like Charles Oakley. Also, Dolan was voted the second worst owner in New York sports by ESPN. The guy in front of him was only worse because he tricked the Islanders into thinking he was rich.
Dolan doesn’t seem to have a clue. He booked his own trash ass band to open for Eagles when they played at Madison Square Garden. Getting to open for a band just because you own the building is incredibly sad. It’s the definition of privilege.
He clearly doesn’t know how to own a NBA franchise. Just look at how he handled the Black Lives Matter protest. When the majority of the players that play for you are African American you can’t handle that situation the way he did. You have to show you stand with the players who are making you millions.
The Knicks would benefit greatly if Dolan no longer owned the team. In a perfect world, he would sell for the betterment of the team. Within this perfect world, we have a list of a few replacement owners who could change the culture of the New York Knicks.
If we want to figure out who could realistically own Madison Square Garden and the teams that play in it, we had to see who could actually afford it. The Knicks are worth $4.6 billion and the New York Rangers are worth $2 billion. So an asking price for both would be around $7-8 billion, but let’s just put the Knicks up for sale. Now one investor would have more than the $4.6-5 billion to buy the team. A group of investors could also pool all of their money together and buy the sports franchise. But either way, the Knicks need a new owner and these candidates have been vetted and ready to make a run.
Candidate 1 Jeff Bezos
IMAGE: Jeff Bezos at the ENCORE awards. PHOTO CREDIT: Steve Jurvetson
Jeff Bezos is the richest person on this list with a net worth of more than $150 billion. Bezos already runs an empire that includes Amazon, the Washington Post and Whole Foods. He could buy the team no problem and add the Knicks to his running list of business ventures.
As the CEO of Amazon, Bezos would be able to run the team as a figurehead type role. Think of Steve Ballmer from the Clippers, who supports the team but takes a hands off approach in terms of running it. Bezos wouldn’t want to be taken fully from Amazon, nor should he be. This would allow the basketball minds to finally run the team like it should be without worrying about the owner meddling with the team. He even has support from Knicks’ greats. Charles Oakley, an all-time great Knick, said that Bezos is looking to buy the Knicks.
Ask Dolan if he has Oakley’s support. I’ll wait.
Bezos would mostly have a hands off approach and let the team grow as he sees the franchise as an investment. This might be the best thing for the Knicks as the general manager and director of basketball operations of his choice could work without fear of an old, white, shitty jazz singer getting in the way. He could be a Mark Cuban type of owner who loves the game and wants to be around the team but also has other business ventures that need his time. Besides, Bezos on the sidelines would be a huge draw for the team. Another celebrity fan to sit next to Spike Lee would be fun to see and would do wonders for the team’s image.
This is the best scenario for the Knicks strictly because Bezos has the money to buy the team without any investors and the attitude to stay away from basketball decisions.
Candidate 2 Spike Lee and a buying group
Image: Cannes 1999, Spike Lee talking about “Summer of Sam.” PHOTO CREDIT: Danny Norton//Wikimedia Commons
Spike Lee wouldn’t be able to afford to buy the Knicks himself with around a $40 million net worth. Afterall, we’re talking about billions of dollars here. But if he gets in with a bunch of rich people though, they can surely buy the Knicks. Who wouldn’t like Spike as the face of the Knicks? Hell, he’s been the unofficial team mascot since he first started going to games.
You can’t think about a Knicks home game without thinking of Spike Lee. The guy is a lifelong fan, and has been a season ticket holder since 1992. He’s the team’s most famous fan. He’s the Jack Nicholson of the Knicks. Some might even say Jack Nicholson is the Spike Lee of the Lakers. He’s already leagues ahead of Drake as a celebrity fan.
Lee knows more about basketball than Dolan ever will. Just take a look at “Who’s Got Game,” “Kobe Doin’ Work” and literally any Spike Lee Nike commercial. He would be a part of the basketball operation but he wouldn’t be heavily involved. It would not be surprising to see him mirror his Brooklyn counterpart Joe Tsai. I could see him wanting team success and having a hand in that, but not necessarily taking complete control.
Lee would be able to change the culture of the Knicks by being intune with the city and the people inside the NBA. Culturally, he would be an amazing get for the team and would usher in a cooler era for the Knicks. It would be like if someone took the swagger the team had back in the 1970s and modernized it. He would be the best candidate to finally change the culture of the Knicks and be the one to bring stars back to the Big Apple.
Candidate 3 Larry Ellison
Most of you have probably never heard of Larry Ellison and that’s a good thing. He has a net worth of $69 billion (nice) and is the sixth richest billionaire in the world, so he would have no problem buying the disheveled franchise. Ellison is the co-founder, executive chairman and chief technology officer of Oracle Corporation, so he knows how to run a big corporation and it would be an easy transition for him.
Also being relatively unknown helps in this situation. If he runs the team in the background, he won’t have to worry about the media bashing his every move. This move would put the Knicks on the right path as a franchise to ensure it’s run well. You need a strong head of a company in order for it to be successful and that is what Ellison can give to the Knicks.
Candidate 4 Gary Busey
Image: Gary Busey. PHOTO CREDIT: Glenn Francis//PacificProDigital.com
Gary Busey is an actor who has a net worth of about $500,000. Now he isn’t a candidate because of his money, but because of his beautiful mind. The man is an undiagnosed lunatic and it is the perfect reason for a buying group to make him the head of the New York Knicks.
I think he would connect with the city of New York so well. He would be a figure everyone would love and believe in. He thinks outside of the box and that’s perfect for what NY is. New Yorkers will respect him and that’s something they haven’t shown Dolan, who’s a jackass. Busey is one of the smartest humans alive. Let’s get inside his head with this elegant quote, “nothing changes like changes, because nothing changes but the changes.”
But this next quote really shows why he’s a great candidate “T-E-A-M stands for together everyone achieves more.” He knows exactly how changes are needed to get this team on the right path. It starts with everyone. The fans, the players and the front office all have to be a team in order to achieve greatness. This is the candidate I personally would vote for because I see a man who might be looked at as a failure, finally finding the one thing his beautiful mind can flourish at.
P.S. Don’t ban me from MSG, I promise I’ll buy tickets next year <3