Patrick Ewing Has 99 Problems, and Getting Harassed by Security at Madison Square Garden Shouldn't Be One of Them

Illustration for article titled Patrick Ewing Has 99 Problems, and Getting Harassed by Security at Madison Square Garden Shouldn't Be One of Them
Photo: Christian Petersen (Getty Images)

Ask any hoops head who’s the greatest New York Knick of all-time and you’ll get one of three answers: Walt Frazier, Willis Reid, or Patrick Ewing. (Jerome James is also an acceptable answer.) Yet despite being the centerpiece of the franchise for 15 years—13 of which the team made the playoffs—there are apparently living, breathing human beings at Madison Square Garden who don’t know who the hell he is.

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How do we know this? Because Ewing, now the head coach at Georgetown, keeps getting harassed by Garden security ever since his team arrived to do damage in the Big East Tournament. So after Georgetown upset top-seeded Villanova on Thursday, the “Hoya Destroya” had a few things to get off of his chest.

“I do want to say one thing, though. I thought this was my building,” he told reporters. “And I feel terrible that I’m getting stopped, accosted, [by people] asking for passes. Everybody in this building should know who the hell I am. And I’m getting stopped—I can’t move around this building. I was like, ‘What the hell? Is this Madison Square Garden?’ I’m gonna have to call [Knicks owner] Mr. Dolan and say, ‘Jesus, is my number in the rafters or what?’”

To put this in context, imagine security shaking down Magic Johnson at Staples Center, or Michael Jordan being tormented by Bulls employees at the United Center when there’s a whole-ass statue of his Black ass outside. That shit would never in life occur. But because the Knicks are the Knicks, this type of fuck shit is not only unsurprising, but par for the course.

I’m sure we can all recall last March when Reggie Miller’s archenemy, Spike Lee, had his own heated confrontation with Knicks security and was denied entry into the arena. Of course, you knew this already because you are a fervent reader of The Root.

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There was also the time that notorious NBA great Charles Oakley, the same dude who used to inhale rebounds and elbow niggas in the head for a living as a card-carrying member of the Knicks, had his own ugly dispute with Garden security that damn near turned into a brawl. Oakley was handcuffed, tossed out the building by Uncle Phil, and charged with three counts of misdemeanor third-degree assault and one count of misdemeanor criminal trespass.

To the surprise of absolutely no one, he’s been on some “Fuck James Dolan” shit ever since.

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What in the hell is going on at Madison Square Garden?

Oh, that’s right; James Dolan is going on at Madison Square Garden.

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And as long as he’s running the show, expect the Knicks to only make headlines when it’s time to publicly embarrass themselves.

Menace to supremacy. Founder of Extraordinary Ideas and co-host and producer of The Extraordinary Negroes podcast. Impatiently waiting for y'all to stop putting sugar in grits.

DISCUSSION

The comments on Twitter by people trying to rationalize this shit was either funny or offensive depending on your point of view. The typical shit was “well most of these employees may not have been born when he played at MSG.” Uh what? On the outside of the building there is a big ass banner with his face on it. I would also think when you started working there you would see his image and retired number in the rafters and know who his ass is. Point blank, there is no excuse for not knowing who one of the best athletes in the history of New York City is. Unless James Dolan wants to piss off the one Knick he didn’t arrest.