The New York Knicks’ trainwreck of a season continued to get worse with owner James Dolan going off the rails again, this time lashing out at a fan and calling him an asshole.
According to Deadspin, Mike Hamersky, a self-described Knicks superfan and season ticket holder, was waiting for his friend, Raul Silva outside of Madison Square Garden before the Knicks/Bulls tipoff when he saw Dolan walking past him to a waiting limo.
Hamersky, 35, says he grew up a huge Knicks fan but has been fed up for years with the direction the team has been going and he didn’t want to miss a chance to speak the truth to the power of the franchise.
“Sell the team, Jim!” Hamersky shouted.
According to Hamersky, Silva, and Dolan, rather than getting in the car, turned around and walked toward them, asking who yelled. Hamersky admitted/boasted it was him, and Dolan got in his face and started yelling. Dolan asked Mike Hamersky what he did for a living, and Hamersky told him he’s a lawyer. “I think he was surprised to hear that,” Hamersky says.
Hamersky says Dolan then yelled, “What if I showed up at your office and called you an asshole? Because you are an asshole!”
Dolan remembers yelling a bit more at the heckler: “What if I told you, ‘You suck at your job?’ Or, ‘How do you like losing that case?”
Dolan then accused Hamersky of being intoxicated, but the attorney denied the accusation, saying he came to MSG straight from instructing a Fordham law class and didn’t have time to get drunk before the game.
Hamersky says he then walked away from Dolan, worried the encounter would escalate. He says a member of Dolan’s security followed him away from the Garden for several blocks before he lost him. He then met up with Silva and got safely to their seats for the game, admittingly looking over their shoulders all night.
“I told Mike, ‘Man, you’re going to get Oakleyed!’” Silva says. We all remember Dolan having former Knicks forward Charles Oakley removed by Garden security. Dolan accused Oakley of being drunk as well. The incident further damaged Dolan’s relationship with his team’s fan base. But in this altercation with a fan, Dolan was not apologetic at all.
“I get it. They call me names every day in the paper. Fine. I get it,” Dolan says. “But you’re walking up to the place where I work? It’s like they’re laying in wait for you. It’s like stalking me outside my home. Some people tend to think of team owners like politicians. But we’re not! I didn’t run for any office. These people who yell at you act surprised when you yell back. It’s like when I got that incredibly derogatory email, and so I wrote back an incredibly derogatory email, and these people are surprised?”
Harmersky says he “submitted an inquiry to the NBA to open a formal complaint against Mr. Dolan.” He, however, still intends to renew his season tickets for next year.
“I can’t help it,” Hamersky says. “I love the Knicks.”