View Full Version : Bill Simmons threatened by Knicks GM Isiah Thomas

01-18-2006, 02:25 PM
MC: Losing Isiah (http://insider.espn.go.com/espn/page2/blog/entry?id=2295277&searchName=simmons&campaign=rss&source=bill_simmons&action=login&appRedirect=http%3a%2f%2finsider.espn.go.com%2fesp n%2fpage2%2fblog%2fentry%3fid%3d2295277%26searchNa me%3dsimmons%26campaign%3drss%26source%3dbill_simm ons)
Bill Simmons

Up until this month, my list of top-10 career highlights looked like this:

1. Went to the Pats-Rams Super Bowl, sat in the same end zone where Adam Vinatieri's game-winning field goal landed, got relatively drunk on Bourbon Street, handed in a column read by tons of people.

2. Made fun of contestants on "Real World/Road Rules Challenge," provoked angry Internet response from Theo.

3. Went to Games 4 and 5 of the 2004 ALCS, stayed up until 5:30 a.m. writing about it, ended up with a column read by tons of people.

4. Convinced Luke Perry in the "Jimmy Kimmel Live" green room to reenact the scene where his dad on "90210" was blown up.

5. Once provoked Elgin Baylor to say the words, "That guy's an [rhymes with bassbowl]."

6. Nearly completed fantasy baseball trade on cell phone while walking down ESPYs red carpet.

7. Broke news of Celtics-Lakers trade involving Gary Payton and Chris Mihm, then sent taunting e-mail to Ric Bucher.

8. Appeared on the "Rome is Burning" forum with Roger Lodge.

9. Wrote a book that new Sox second baseman Mark Loretta admitted reading in NESN interview last month.

10. During the 2005 NBA All-Star Weekend, I was recognized by the members of Kyle Korver's posse, who then bought me a drink.

Well, now I have a new career highlight: During a New York radio interview Monday, Isiah Thomas threatened to make trouble for me. Talking to Stephen A. Smith he said, "I'm gonna tell ya ... if I see this guy Bill Simmons, oh, it's gonna be a problem with me and him ..." I thought it was ironic he threatened me on Martin Luther King Jr. Day -- I'm sure MLK would have been proud. Given that this was the same guy who sucker-punched his best friend on the Pistons (Bill Laimbeer) during the 1992 season, I am thinking about travelling with a full-time bodyguard, or at the very least a can of mace or one of those tasers that you can get in a stalker catalog.

Here's my question for Isiah, who's very angry with me ...

Right now, you have a roster that costs something like $120 million. You completely overhauled the Knicks' roster in 14 months, and now you're trying to overhaul it again. There's no rhyme or reason to anything you're doing. Your team doesn't have a first-round pick next summer, and in the summer of 2007 -- widely considered to be the deepest draft in 20-plus years -- the Bulls have the right to exchange first-round picks with you (most of your fans don't even know this). You also have to give another first-round pick to Phoenix before 2010. And you have at least eight or nine players on your roster who are completely, utterly, totally untradable, including someone with a possible heart defect and someone whose back is in such bad shape nobody would insure his contract. Your team also has one of the worst records in the league. And your fans are downright traumatized at this point, to the degree that you went into hiding until your recent winning streak. Now you're available to talk to the press again, of course.

So why shouldn't you be criticized for any of this? Why should you be immune? Why should the fact that you destroyed the CBA, then coached an underachieving Pacers team that came within two possessions of making the 2004 Finals one year after you left ... why isn't this relevant in some way? I would love to know the answer to this. So either you can e-mail me, have one of your PR people call me to explain it, or tell me as while you're making trouble for me on the street.

Or, I can fly to New York and we can have a dignified conversation about this stuff. Followed by you beating the living hell out of me.

It's up to you.

And just for the record, in the summer of 2004, I wrote a nice column about you and your old Pistons team; maybe you missed it. So I couldn't really be "out to get you," right? You're a public figure. When you screw up, people are going to write about it. Get over yourself.

Anyway, here are the e-mails about the interview we received Monday:

I'm just praying that I'm the first person to send you this even though it's possible thousands have already in the five minutes since the moment. Stephen A. Smith was interviewing Isiah Thomas on 1050 ESPN Radio New York, and Isiah was complimenting Stephen A. on not crossing the line by insulting players personally while critiquing them. So they went on about the ethics of it, and then Isiah said that if he ever saw Bill Simmons on the street, there would be a problem for you two. Too bad there's no TiVo for AM radio, because that would be save until I delete status. So how does it feel to be called out by Isiah Thomas? Maybe you're one step closer to playing for the Knicks now, assuming that he naturally confuses you in a couple days with Shaq.

P.S. Stephen A. responded by asking "who?"
-- Jeremy, New York

Just an FYI, on Stephen A. Smith's ESPN (1050 AM, NY) radio show, Isiah Thomas just ranted about sportswriters without any athletic ability making personal attacks on athletes. He went so far as to say that if he were to meet you, Bill Simmons, on the street, there would be a problem. Maybe you should watch your back. Just wondering, you have the Clippers GM and the Knicks GM who want to meet you in an alley, alone. Anyone else?
-- Alex, Kearny, N.J.

Sports Guy, I think you'd like to know that Isiah Thomas is planning to take revenge on you. Today on the Stephen A. Smith show on ESPN Radio here in New York, Thomas said if "I ever meet this guy Bill Simmons, it won't be good for him." In other words, I think he's planning on signing you.
-- Dan Goodman, New York

Don't know if you've heard about this yet, but Isiah Thomas was on Stephen A. Smith's radio show this morning on 1050 AM in NY with Oscar Robertson. I only caught the tail end of it, but I believe it was a discussion centering around MLK day. Again, don't know the context, but at the end of the interview, Isiah called out and said that there would be problems if he saw "this Bill Simmons" on the street. Stephen A. Smith said that he didn't know who you were.
-- Nick, New Jersey

Isiah just called you out. I was listening to ESPN radio out of NYC and they had Isiah, Jim Brown and Oscar Robertson on for MLK day on the Stephen A. Smith show. Isiah was talking about how the media decided how to present you, and that's what type of legacy you have. He then said it's OK to knock a guy's skills or the way he plays the game and that players understand that. If you get personal then there's trouble. He then said that if he ever sees Bill Simmons, there will be trouble. Out of the blue ... calling you out. I guess it's OK to knock a guy's on-court skills, but don't dare present the facts to knock his GM ability.
-- Rob O, Neptune, N.J.

In the midst of the Stephen A. Smith show on Martin Luther King Day, the GM of the "surging" Knicks calls you out and wants to meet you on some street corner, yada, yada, yada. ... That's right, Isiah doesn't have bigger things to worry about. The Knicks are now 13-23 in the midst of four games in five days, including yesterday's brutal display at Toronto and the champs coming to town on Thursday, but he specifically mentions you during a phone interview. Shouldn't he be more focused on improving the Knicks?
-- Drew, Summit, N.J.

Monday on the Stephen A. Smith radio show, Isiah Thomas called you out. To paraphrase, he mentioned your name and said you'd be in trouble if you guys ever were to meet. The topic was the lack of black editors in the print media and Zeke brought up your name. I am not sure if the Stephen A. Smith show is nationally syndicated or if it is just a show for metro NYC area. Try to listen to the interview. It was with Zeke, Jim Brown and Oscar Robertson celebrating MLK day. Good Stuff!!!
-- Chris, Scarsdale, N.Y.

I might be the 97th person to e-mail this to you, but I heard Isiah Thomas threaten that "if I see him in the street there's gonna be a problem." This morning on the radio. So you apparently have the league's worst GM looking for you.
-- David Michlin, Jericho, N.Y.

Was listening to Stephen A Smith's radio show. He had on Oscar Robertson, Jim Brown and Isiah. Isiah was speaking about how people in the press take cheap shots because they are not man enough to go face to face with someone. He then proceeded to say, he was waiting for the day that he ran into Bill Simmons. Stephen A. Smith quickly changed the topic.
-- Mike, Long Island, N.Y.

01-19-2006, 01:16 AM
stand in line zeke

01-19-2006, 01:19 AM
Bill Simmons rides the short bus.

01-19-2006, 01:27 AM
I really enjoy Simmons, although he's become a characture at this point.

However, he is completely right about Thomas. Thomas sucks, and has sucked at everything he's done after his playing career finished.

In my mind, Thomas has to be fined by the NBA for these comments. How can the top man for the top team (market-wise) in the league be allowed to threaten sportswriters without repercussion? I'm guessing it's because Simmons is a niche writer that this hasn't gotten more media attention. I find it rather disgusting, and hope Thomas is reprimanded.

01-19-2006, 03:07 AM
You're right about one thing SWC. Zeke is a horrible GM, and a horrible coach.

01-19-2006, 06:35 PM
The Bulls killed them on the deal. The Knicks need to rebuild and retool all they are and continue to do is hang around in mediocrity.

01-19-2006, 11:49 PM
Zeke and Simmons...two people that absolutely suck at what they do.

01-20-2006, 08:42 AM
Zeke and Simmons...two people that absolutely suck at what they do.

I'm surprised a faithful Ticket listener doesn't like Simmons. To me he's like the Ticket in print. If I could pick one columnist to read the rest of my life on a regular basis, it would be him.

01-20-2006, 09:42 AM
I always knew that there was something wrong with thig. ;)

01-20-2006, 09:59 AM
Simmons is good fora laugh and Isiah is good for seven.

Big Boy Laroux
01-20-2006, 10:42 AM
thig, i agree... reading his articles is like having a conversation with my group of friends. he's actually a refreshing viewpoint in the world of sports media.

01-20-2006, 10:53 AM
Simmons is funny at times; other times he's talking out of his ass.

Yeah, he pretty much is like the Ticket in print, except he sometimes uses facts when talking about sports.


As for Isiah, I think any criticism the guy gets is deserved. He has a terrible team that's not going to get much better for the foreseeable future.

Big Boy Laroux
01-20-2006, 10:55 AM
yeah, and he openly admits he makes mistakes, even calls himself an idiot many, many times.

01-20-2006, 12:48 PM
Simmons.. good. Usually.
Isiah.. suck. Always.

01-21-2006, 11:08 PM
Simmons has his moments and he does know ALOT more about basketball than the ticket even though he still doesnt know alot. He is a nice read usually though i dont normally agree with anything he says. Isiah is just a moron. Was one hell of a player. Terrible at everything else.

01-22-2006, 11:30 AM
Everything on ESPN page 2 is a bit. ESPN of late has become a talk show.

Isiah has made good draft picks with Channing Frey, David Lee, and Nate Robinson. He just shouldn't have sacrificed draft picks in acquistions for Eddy Curry and Stephon Marbury.

01-22-2006, 12:26 PM
Everything on ESPN page 2 is a bit. ESPN of late has become a talk show.

Isiah has made good draft picks with Channing Frey, David Lee, and Nate Robinson. He just shouldn't have sacrificed draft picks in acquistions for Eddy Curry and Stephon Marbury.
Frey looks like he could be a player on the order of Thurl Bailey or Dale Davis--solid but not a star.

Robinson and Lee are fun to watch at times, if for no other than that they play with energy---lots of mistakes but energy. Unlike most of the rest of the players Thomas has pulled in here, they don't have the big bloated, motivation-sapping, attitude-hardening contracts. But the jury is still out on them--way out.

Thomas has made tons of mistakes, not the least of which has been jettisoning draft picks. Drafting has been the area where he's done the least harm, so it is ironic that he's kneecapped himself on draft picks.

The 24-second clock on Zeke's tenure as GM is winding down. The drama will be in whether he gets off one last wild shot.

01-25-2006, 12:06 PM
Sexual Harassment Suit Filed Against Thomas and Garden

By RICHARD SANDOMIR (http://query.nytimes.com/search/query?ppds=bylL&v1=RICHARD%20SANDOMIR&fdq=19960101&td=sysdate&sort=newest&ac=RICHARD%20SANDOMIR&inline=nyt-per)
Published: January 25, 2006

A former high-level Knicks (http://topics.nytimes.com/top/news/sports/probasketball/nationalbasketballassociation/newyorkknicks/index.html?inline=nyt-org) executive filed a lawsuit yesterday accusing Isiah Thomas (http://topics.nytimes.com/top/reference/timestopics/people/t/isiah_thomas/index.html?inline=nyt-per), the team's president, of sexual harassment and discrimination, saying he had made unwanted advances, cursed her and barred players from working with her on community events.

In a lawsuit filed in federal court in Manhattan, the executive, Anucha Browne Sanders, said that Thomas refused to stop his actions despite her protests and discomfort, and that her immediate supervisor, Steve Mills, the president of Madison Square Garden Sports, did nothing to intercede on her behalf.

Last Thursday, Browne Sanders was fired as the team's senior vice president for marketing and business operations after an in-house investigation by the Garden found her complaint to be "unsupported."

Browne Sanders, 43, said in a telephone interview yesterday that she had found her dream job with the Knicks, whom she joined in 2000. Now, she said: "I'm outraged at the termination. I feel they've destroyed a stellar sports career."

She named Thomas and the Garden as defendants in the lawsuit, which charges them with two counts of sex discrimination and two counts of retaliation. She is seeking reinstatement and unspecified damages.

Ron Green, the Garden's lawyer, called the lawsuit "fabricated and outrageous." He said that Browne Sanders was fired "because of an inability to fulfill professional responsibilities," and said she "is now seeking a financial windfall." He said the Garden had a policy to prevent a hostile work environment, and called Browne Sanders's claims "baseless allegations."

In their statement, Thomas's lawyers, Peter Parcher and Sue Ellen Eisenberg, called the lawsuit a "cynical attempt to get a large sum of money from Madison Square Garden by taking advantage of the celebrity status of our client, who had no day-to-day interaction with her." Garden officials referred all questions for Thomas to his lawyers.

Parcher and Eisenberg accused Browne Sanders of demanding, as a condition of her departure, a $6 million payment, more than 20 times her salary.

"That statement is false, as the lawyers who made it should know," said Judith P. Vladeck, one of the lawyers for Browne Sanders.

The Garden, and two of its officials, are defendants in another sexual discrimination suit. In October 2004, Courtney Prince, a former captain of the Rangers' ice-skating cheerleaders, charged that she was harassed and then fired after she told other skaters that she had been solicited for sex by a public-relations manager for the team during a postgame encounter in a bar. The case is awaiting a decision on a motion to dismiss one of its claims.

Browne Sanders - a star basketball player at Northwestern and the fourth-leading women's scorer in Big Ten history - said in her lawsuit that the work environment within the Garden changed drastically soon after Thomas was hired in December 2003.

She described in court papers several occasions in which Thomas berated her coarsely, once after a Knicks loss the day after a community event she had organized, and another time during a meeting with Mills and Thomas, who she said made his remarks when Mills left the room.

Browne Sanders, who worked for I.B.M. before joining the Garden, said that Thomas spoke of her crudely to members of his basketball operations staff, telling them not to take directions from her.

In late 2004, she alleges, Thomas's hostile behavior changed to making sexual overtures. After one game, she said in her lawsuit, he hugged her tightly and told her he had figured out why they had problems. He said he was "in love" with her and they were "so much alike." She said that he compared his feelings for her to experiences the characters had in the film "Love and Basketball."

She said that he once told her: "I know you think I'm inappropriate. But I'm in love with you."

Last month, she charges, he again tried to kiss her, and when she pulled away, he said, "What, I can't get any love from you today?"

She said that she had made clear that his advances were unwelcome.

Browne Sanders's suit alleged that Thomas's attitude toward her was mirrored by the star point guard Stephon Marbury (http://topics.nytimes.com/top/reference/timestopics/people/m/stephon_marbury/index.html?inline=nyt-per). In the suit, she asserted that other Garden employees informed her that Marbury had made derogatory comments about her.

When she told Mills about Marbury's remarks, according to the suit, she said that Mills warned her that if she kept making sexual-harassment claims, she should be prepared for Thomas to "spread a damaging and false rumor" about her.

She said that Mills also told her early last year that Knicks players were not cooperating with her, at Thomas's direction. She said that led directly to a promotional campaign using cardboard cutouts of the players.

Twice last year, she said she met with a human-resources consultant hired by the Garden, who she claimed told her that Mills had asked him to set up a program for Thomas "because he had problems with women."

This past November, after Browne Sanders retained a legal team, the Garden initiated an investigation but refused to let her work for three weeks. Finally, last Thursday, she was told by the Garden that her claims could not be substantiated and that she was being fired.

The lawsuit alleges that by firing Browne Sanders, "Madison Square Garden flouted the antidiscrimination laws to a degree rarely seen in the contemporary workplace."

She said that a Garden lawyer said that she was dismissed because she could not function effectively in her job and interacted poorly with senior management. She said, however, that her employee evaluations were strong and never cited her for poor performance.

Sounds like she was doing fine before Thomas was hired.
Anucha Browne Sanders Promoted to Senior Vice President, Marketing and Business Operations
NEW YORK, May 13, 2002 – The New York Knickerbockers today announced the promotion of Anucha Browne Sanders to the newly-created position of Senior Vice President, Marketing and Business Operations. Browne Sanders had held the position of Vice President of Marketing since joining the team on Nov. 20, 2000 and will assume her new role immediately.

“Anucha has done an outstanding job in a very short time with the Knicks and is one of the rising stars in the field,” said Madison Square Garden President, Sports Team Operations Steve Mills. “This new position will allow her to more effectively set the strategy in leveraging the Knicks’ brand.”

“It is both an honor and a pleasure to accept this promotion,” Browne Sanders said. “The potential of developing the Knicks brand is just beginning to be realized, and I am looking forward to working with our entire team to have us realize that potential.”

In her new role, the Brooklyn, N.Y. native will be responsible for the day-to-day management of the business side of the Knicks front office and serve as the team’s chief marketing officer. Her responsibilities will be overseeing all of the club’s business agendas, including: partnerships, fan development, field marketing, event presentation, community relations, special events and new media. She will work closely with MSG’s other sports properties - the New York Rangers and New York Liberty - in finding new and innovative ways to integrate the three very distinct and highly successful brands, and be the primary liaison between the team and the NBA.

Prior to joining the Knicks, Browne Sanders spent 11 years with IBM Corporation, serving in a number of roles, most recently as a Program Manager in IBM’s Worldwide Sports Office. In that capacity, she was responsible for a number of IBM’s marketing efforts during the Olympic Games (Atlanta 1996, Nagano 1998 and Sydney 2000), including corporate sponsorship efforts that allowed IBM to leverage their investment as a Worldwide Olympic sponsor.

The Northwestern University graduate is also no stranger to success on the hardwood. She was a three-time All Big Ten selection and two-time Big Ten Player of the Year for the Wildcats, finishing her career as the all-time leading scorer in Big Ten women’s basketball history, as well as the school’s all-time leader in points (2,307) and rebounds (951). Anucha was a two-time Wade Trophy nominee, 1985 Kodak All-American and in her senior season of 1984-85, and led the nation in scoring (a school record 31.5 ppg). She was also selected to play on the U.S. National Team that toured Europe and Asia following her graduation.

Browne Sanders, 38, holds a Bachelors of Science in Communications from Northwestern, and a Masters degree in Marketing communications from Florida State University. Anucha resides with her husband Roy and their three children in New Jersey.

01-25-2006, 12:09 PM
Isaiah is a tool.

I guess this provide dirno and others with another opportunity to hate on a "bitch" who obviously is after money. Sadly, the woman is going to be treated horrifically in the coming days.

01-25-2006, 01:05 PM
Isaiah is a tool.

I guess this provide dirno and others with another opportunity to hate on a "bitch" who obviously is after money. Sadly, the woman is going to be treated horrifically in the coming days.

Why would you mention me when I haven't even commented in this thread? You need to get over your obsession with me because this is how threads get derailed.

Since you're so concerned about what I think here it is: I have no opinion. Maybe he's guilty maybe he's not. Eventually the facts will trickle out and I'll decide. What I'm not going do is to automatically assume that he is guilty because he's a bad GM or because he froze out Mike in the All-Star game, or because he has a penis.

01-25-2006, 01:31 PM
Knicks' Thomasin harass suit
Fired worker claims he made sexual advances
Knicks President and basketball legend Isiah Thomas was at the center of a bombshell lawsuit last night after a senior female employee alleged she had been the target of harassment. Anucha Browne Sanders, the team's former high-profile senior vice president of marketing, filed papers against the hoops great in Manhattan Federal Court yesterday - claiming Thomas called her a "b----" and asked her to have sex.

She said when she refused his advances, the 44-year-old married father replied: "What? I can't get any love today?"

Thomas' legal team immediately branded Browne Sanders an opportunist - charging her complaints followed a failed attempt to extort $6 million. And the lawyers charged she was using Hall of Famer Thomas' standing to aid her case.

"This lawsuit is a blatant attempt by Anucha Browne Sanders to get a large sum of money from Madison Square Garden by taking advantage of the celebrity status of our client," said Thomas' attorneys Peter Parcher and Sue Ellen Eisenberg.

"While still employed, she demanded from the Garden, as a condition of her departure, a payment of $6 million, which is more than 20 years of her salary."

But Browne Sanders says Thomas' alleged shabby treatment of her was so public that team members - including star player Stephon Marbury - joined in the abuse.

"The Knicks' star player felt free to refer to Browne Sanders as a 'black b----,'" the lawsuit states.
In another accusation sure to draw major attention, Browne Sanders claims Thomas worked with concierges at hotels frequented by visiting teams to encourage out-of-town players to go to certain bars and strip clubs and get drunk the night before a day game.

Thomas launched his alleged campaign against Browne Sanders - a former college basketball standout who became a rising executive - in March 2004, following a loss by the struggling Knicks, the suit claims.
He blamed their poor performance on a late-night public relations event the night before.

"Thomas grabbed Browne Sanders' arm and pulled her into a small room to the side of the team's locker room," the papers claim. "He yelled that the team was not going to do 'any more f------ events.'"

Browne Sanders was barred from speaking directly to team members, she said - a situation that got so bad she was forced to use cardboard cutouts of players in marketing campaigns.

A few months later, the 43-year-old mother of three from Short Hills, N.J., contends, Thomas made sexual advances.

"After the Knicks game on December 30, 2004, Thomas stopped Browne Sanders, hugged her tightly and said that he had determined why he and Browne Sanders 'had problems' with one another," the suit says.
"Thomas told Browne Sanders he was 'in love' with her."
The suit claims such advances became regular, and that she complained to team higherups - though no action was taken.
"On more than one occasion, [Thomas asked her] if she would meet with him outside of the office or 'offsite,'" the lawsuit contends. "Browne Sanders understood these requests as sexual advances, which she refused."

Browne Sanders also said she was ordered by Garden chairman James Dolan to create positions for unqualified employees - including two cousins of Marbury's and Dolan's gardener.

The situation came to a head last month. A Garden source said last night, "Before Christmas, she went to the management and said, 'Look, I'm a victim of harassment and I don't think I can work here anymore.'

"The Knicks said they would do a full investigation and she should take time off while that was done.
"Two or three days ago, she was officially fired. She said, 'If you want to let me go, you should pay me $6 million.'

"She was screaming and yelling and her behavior was erratic. The Garden made a tough call because it would have been easy for them to come to some kind of settlement, but they feel nothing has been done wrong here."
Browne Sanders' lawsuit, which claims discrimination and charges she was fired in retaliation for complaining, demands her reinstatement and a payment of damages. It doesn't state an amount.

Ron Green, the Garden's attorney, said last night, "This fabricated and outrageous charge comes from an individual who Madison Square Garden fired because of an inability to fulfill her professional responsibilities, and who is now seeking a financial windfall.

"We will fight these outrageous charges and defend our employees from allegations intended to embarrass and do harm to them."

But Kevin Mintzer, representing Browne Sanders, said, "Mr. Green was in our offices [yesterday] and acknowledged she had substantial claims.

"Even celebrities are not above the law, and it's pathetic that [Thomas] should hide behind his celebrity status. The $6 million claim is false, and [his legal team] know[s] it."

Browne Sanders was hired by the Knicks five years ago by Thomas' predecessor, Scott Layden. She became the only female senior manager at the Knicks - and a rising star in sports marketing who even had her own page in the Knicks yearbook.

Thomas, who has two children with his wife, Lynn, has her full support, said the source.

"She is outraged. She is totally 100% standing by his side," he said. "This is all done to embarrass him and get some money."

01-25-2006, 01:40 PM

Isiah Thomas is a foul-mouthed, slobbering harasser who propositioned the Knicks' former top marketing exec for sex and even plotted to lure opposing teams to boozy strip joints to throw off their games, an explosive new lawsuit charges. "I know you think I'm inappropriate, but I'm in love with you," Knick President Thomas allegedly cooed to statuesque, then-Vice President Anucha Browne Sanders, according to her suit, which was filed in Manhattan yesterday.

Sanders an attractive ex-college basketball star and married, 43-year-old mom of three charges that Thomas' fouls began almost immediately after the former Detroit Pistons hoop legend took over as president of the Knicks at the end of 2003.

"Contrary to Thomas' carefully cultivated public persona, he is capable of abhorrent behavior in private," alleges the lawsuit, which formally charges sex discrimination and then retaliation after Sanders complained and was fired.

"Soon after his hire, he began to sexually harass Sanders, including calling her 'bitch' and 'ho' to her face," the suit says.

"Sexual advances" quickly followed, as the married dad of two began "repeatedly professing his love for [Sanders], making comments about her physical appearance and suggesting that they go 'offsite' together, a thinly veiled solicitation for sex," the suit says.

A man answering Thomas' cellphone hung up last night when a reporter asked for him.
Sanders is suing for unspecified monetary damages and her job back.

Thomas' lawyers quickly denied the allegations as "a blatant and cynical attempt . . . to get a large sum of money from Madison Square Garden by exploiting the celebrity status of our client.
"While still employed, she demanded from the Garden as a condition of her departure a payment of $6 million, which is more than 20 years of her salary."

A well-placed source said that earlier this month, "[Sanders'] lawyer came to the Garden and said, 'I know how this problem can go away. Six million dollars' that's what they wanted. "

The Garden said absolutely not, and they fired her."

One of Sanders' lawyers, Kevin Mitzer, denied that exchange ever took place.

"It's not true, and they know it," he said last night.

One source close to the Knick prez insisted that Thomas "is a happily married man I don't think [Sanders] was even on his radar. "

But Sanders a former IBM honcho with an impressive record who once helped oversee marketing for that firm's Olympics sponsorship charges that Thomas' repulsive behavior wasn't limited to her.

In October 2004, "a female employee of the Knicks told Sanders that Thomas had instructed her to flirt with certain men connected to the game and make them happy," her suit alleges.

Then early last year, "Thomas told [her] he was pushing to get more Sunday noon games on the schedule," the lawsuit says.

"Thomas said he was working with the concierges of the hotels frequented by the visiting teams to have the concierges direct players to certain nightclubs including strip clubs that Thomas had established relationships with.

"Thomas said that his plan was to induce visiting players to go to these clubs on Saturday night and get them intoxicated so that they would not be prepared to play on Sunday," she says in the suit.
Thomas had been asked to leave work at the end of December while MSG's internal probe into the allegations continued, one source said.

The in-house investigation wound up finding Sanders' complaints "completely untrue," a source said.

But the suit says that only a week after Sanders left work voluntarily before her firing, Thomas "hugged her and tried to kiss her."

The New Jersey mom says that during the past two years, she was so disgusted that she repeatedly complained to her direct boss, MSG President Stephen Mills, and urged him to force Thomas to undergo sexual-harassment therapy to no avail.

Amid her griping, the 44-year-old Thomas vacillated between blasting her as a "f- - -ing bitch" and continuing to issue suggestive come-ons to her, the suit charges.

Sanders says Thomas became so incensed over her blatant rejections that he turned many of the Knicks' players against her as she tried to market the franchise.

She claims that team superstar Stephon Marbury would routinely blast her as "that black bitch.
"F- - - that black bitch, she thinks she runs the Knicks, but she don't run sh- -!" she quotes Marbury as spouting off. Marbury's agent declined comment last night.

A key source said that at one point, Thomas "did not agree with all of [Sanders] marketing philosophies and schemes."

Thomas was particularly upset that Sanders who is the fourth leading scorer in Big 10 basketball history after a stellar stint at Northwestern University tried to get him to record voice messages as part of a phone pitch to draw more fans to games.

"He said, 'I'm not doing that,' " the source said.

Thomas griped to Sanders' boss, who eventually reduced her responsibilities, the source said.

"She blamed Isiah for this and complained to [Mills] all the time" afterward, the source said.
In her suit, Sanders claims that when she met with a human-resources consultant in mid-2005, the worker told her that Mills "had asked him to develop a program for Thomas because he has problems with women."

Toward the end of the year, the suit says, Mills warned her that if she "persisted in raising harassment claims, she should be prepared for Thomas to spread a damaging and false rumor" about her.

Sanders' lawyer, Mitzer, said he was told by the other side as recently as yesterday morning that "Ms. Browne Sanders had substantial claims against MSG, and that the retaliation claim in particular could be difficult . . . to defend."

Still, a source sympathetic to Thomas said:

"Isiah Thomas is a self-made guy. He always has been not only wildly successful as a player but as an executive. And in spite of this threat . . . he and his family have decided that there's no way they're giving in to this."

01-25-2006, 01:42 PM
Aw...poor little dirno got his feeling shurt. Funny how it is ok for dirno to do it but when the table turns he whines like a little girl.

Anyways....the facts will come out, just like they did in the showbe rapist case. I'm betting dirno and others will ignore the facts and spew vitriol for whatever side their agenda is that day.

01-25-2006, 01:43 PM
Zeke's on his way out.

An acquaintance who has done promo work for the NYKs says the claims are corrobarable and credible.

01-25-2006, 01:48 PM
Good riddance. I enjoyed Thomas getting the Knicks job. He tried to finish what Layden could not....the total deconstruction of that franchise.

01-25-2006, 02:02 PM
Aw...poor little dirno got his feeling shurt. Funny how it is ok for dirno to do it but when the table turns he whines like a little girl.

Anyways....the facts will come out, just like they did in the showbe rapist case. I'm betting dirno and others will ignore the facts and spew vitriol for whatever side their agenda is that day.

Why would you think my feelings are hurt? I'm just trying to avoid hijacking another thread because Im sure people are tired of it. Plus you're so transparent that smacking you around isn't fun for me.

You've never heard me spew vitriol towards the alleged victim in the Kobe case. You've also never heard me joke about bending over hotel workers.

Again, you have no facts to Kobe is guilty so please stop using that word. It's confounding that someone who claims to be trained in a discipline that's founded on proving theories has such a problem discerning fact and opinion.

01-25-2006, 02:10 PM
I'll use whatever verbage I choose and if you don't care for it tough shit. What's confounding is your ignorance, insistence on being a dick and sympathy for a rapist while ignoring a victim.

01-25-2006, 02:36 PM
I'll use whatever verbage I choose and if you don't care for it tough shit.

Boy you sure told me...you tough SOB...good I’m not in Waco our you’d probably kick my ass. Either that or get my license number and call the police. Now if those same kids that destroyed your property disagreed with you on a message board you would have gone ballistic. Definition of an internet thug.

What's confounding is your ignorance, insistence on being a dick and sympathy for a rapist while ignoring a victim.

Again, I'm not the one joking about the incident but whatever.

01-25-2006, 03:06 PM
Nice attempt at a sache. At least when you are a dick you go all out. Your whiney verbage in the first response solidifies your second grade intelligence. I expected that kind of a typical dick dirno response. Thanks for not disappointing.

It's really very impressive that you read, remember and cite so many of my posts. This is now about the tenth time you have gone back and dug up one of my posts to quote. You are clearly obsessed with me. I understand being completely in awe of an intellectual superior and wanting to be just like him. Thanks for the compliment. I did a similar thing (albeit in a not so creepy, gay, retarded or obsessive manner) with Darwin, Alfred Wallace, Steven J. Gould and many other progressive thinkers. You're welcome for my inspiration. Obsess on dick....obsess on.

Big Boy Laroux
01-25-2006, 03:41 PM
good... lord...

can we keep this out of every thread? do we need a "Doc vs. Dirno Permanent Bitch-Fest" thread?

01-25-2006, 03:41 PM
Doc, you may be a pussycat in the real world but on the internet you're the toughest MF'r I've run across :)

01-25-2006, 03:54 PM
good... lord...

can we keep this out of every thread? do we need a "Doc vs. Dirno Permanent Bitch-Fest" thread?

Sorry about that...I got sucked in again.

01-25-2006, 03:55 PM
Sorry BBL...I don't take well to dicks. ;)

01-25-2006, 03:57 PM
Doc, you may be a pussycat in the real world but on the internet you're the toughest MF'r I've run across :)

I'll take that as a compliment, your white flag, and hopefully you will stfu and move on.

01-25-2006, 04:21 PM
You know the worst part of this?

Because of Thomas's actions the league will never get rid of Violet Palmer. Can't appear to be hostile toward women---even those who deserve it.

01-25-2006, 04:40 PM
You know the worst part of this?

Because of Thomas's actions the league will never get rid of Violet Palmer. Can't appear to be hostile toward women---even those who deserve it.

Didn't they get rid of Dee Canter or did she just resign?

01-25-2006, 04:43 PM
They fired her. But they had to keep Palmer.

And that was BEFORE all this.

Just watched Thomas on a press conference. Lying, smary SOB stands there sounding like Bill Clinton carefully denying that he harassed her.


He'll go down.

01-25-2006, 04:56 PM
He'll go down.

You think so? Tedema Usury got what amounted to a slap on the wrist for the same thing. If I remember correctly he had multiple claims against him.

01-25-2006, 06:31 PM
Yeah, I do.

Because his record as GM is so bad, I think he's on thin ice as it is.

Any pretext will do to move him out.

The glitch will be if the Dolans, Mills, etc who run MSG have just as many harassment skeletons in their closets and instinctively close ranks to shield a fellow pig.

Even so, he's just one scandal away. If it's not this one, it'll be the next one.

01-26-2006, 10:52 AM

NONE of us really knows what actually transpired between Isiah Thomas and Anucha Browne Sanders, a female senior vice president at the Garden, who has filed a sexual harassment lawsuit against the Knicks president after being fired from her job.

Perhaps the details will become clear in court if the case isn't settled or dropped beforehand. I'd bet on one of the latter scenarios. You can be sure the last thing the Garden wants is for its dirty laundry to be aired in the newspapers, allowing us inside a corporate culture that surely has its share of skeletons.

Nonetheless, it's an embarrassing stain on Thomas' tenure with the Knicks and comes at a time when his leadership is being scrutinized. Never has his authority and job security seemed so vulnerable.

Whether or not Thomas is guilty of any inappropriate contact with Sanders, this development only adds to the perception the franchise is becoming dysfunctional and that may prompt owner Jim Dolan to end another clash of personalities within his building, the seemingly shaky alliance between Thomas and his coach Larry Brown.

There has been no real indication Dolan is unhappy with Thomas' job performance over the last two years even though the Knicks have yet to show they're on the path to becoming an elite team anytime soon.
Exactly how much time Thomas has here will ultimately depend on his relationship with Brown and whether a power-struggle develops. Clearly, there is the potential for discord if this season continues to unravel.

We could point to early in the season when Brown, soon after accepting his $10 million per salary, criticized the roster, saying there was too few point guards on the squad. That was a direct reflection on Thomas who has spent the last two years retooling the Knicks from an overpriced, aging team into one that is younger, more athletic and more expensive.

Recently, Thomas and Brown were on opposite sides concerning the suspension of Antonio Davis. When nearly everyone in the Knicks organization, including Brown, said the five-game suspension Davis received for going into the stands in Chicago to protect his wife was excessive, Thomas stood alone in calling the suspension just.

While Thomas is entitled to his opinion, his siding with the league on Davis' suspension raised eyebrows, especially when his coach was adamant Davis had been wronged.

It was another sign the two are independent, headstrong thinkers, which has helped each become successful, but could ultimately work to the detriment of their partnership.

Now comes the public revelation of a sexual harassment lawsuit filed against Thomas and the Garden. The action, of course, comes at a time when neither Thomas nor the Knicks need the bad press.

Despite the return of Stephon Marbury, the Knicks lost their sixth straight game last night, dropping a 106-102 decision to Sacramento in overtime. Gone is all the good vibe generated from their recent six-game winning streak.

For now, the Garden is supporting Thomas in his this legal battle against Sanders. Garden president Steve Mills, who was mentioned in the lawsuit, was at Thomas' side yesterday during a press conference in Manhattan where Thomas professed his innocence.

But the nature of corporate America is to isolate those accused of wrongdoing to protect the rest of the company, meaning this ultimately could be Thomas' battle to fight alone.

He is innocent until proven guilty, but none of this is good for the NBA legend. The team is underachieving; he has been accused of sexual harassment; and he and his coach don't always see things the same.

In the end, Dolan may use this lawsuit to deliver a verdict long before any jury does.

01-26-2006, 11:40 AM
I was listening to ESPN radio this morning and they said that Isaiah has had two other similar allegations. One at Indy and another somewhere else (didn't catch it). They were talking about a pattern of behavior against women.


01-26-2006, 11:49 AM
The other incident was at Toronto.

01-27-2006, 01:37 PM
JIM Dolan, dream owner for arrogant, unaccountable and under performing general managers, now has a nightmare on his hands to try even his exceptional level of patience. Wherever the truth is, somewhere between Anucha Browne Sanders' accusations of sexual harassment and Isiah Thomas' utter denials of it, there is no business plan that can tolerate a bad guy who has put together a bad team.

Isiah has to go, as Dolan will come to realize, the sooner the better. Eventually there will be a settlement because these things almost always reach a point where a settlement suits both parties. Still, long before this suit gets to any testimony from a witness chair, Dolan can read the deposition from empty seats, at least 1000 of them visible to him Wednesday night.

Dolan also is privy to the ledger detailing an NBA-high $120 million outflow for talent, plus previous flushings like Lenny Wilkens and Vin Baker. Sure, the Knicks team Thomas inherited 25 months ago was old, slow and hopelessly over the cap, forcing him to take on even more money and chances on flawed younger players.

Still, one of basketball's smartest-ever floor operators and cunning off-the court manipulators has astoundingly, almost exclusively, acquired players who do not think the game well.

The immediate impact of Channing Frye and David Lee, who have a chance to be lastingly good picks, has been oversold, and little Nate Robinson is a circus distraction from an otherwise terrible body of work. So, any kind of a quick turnaround will be impossible before the lawsuit approaches trial. Certainly a jury will be sworn in before Eddy Curry, the player upon which two high first-round picks and what remains of Thomas's credibility rests, gets healthy, if the center ever does.

Therefore it would be stubbornness of an unprecedented level, even for Dolan, to hang on. Assuming his willingness to fight Browne Sanders is partly out of anger at the dysfunction and, now, humiliation she has brought upon the organization, Dolan still would be better off paying Thomas to go away than her.

We can only guess what the owner believes really took place between Thomas and Browne Sanders, whether Dolan interprets it as threatening or just playful. But the boss who vouched for Glen Sather as an organizational builder while the Rangers continued to miss the playoffs could not be happy Thomas refused to provide players to the Knicks' marketing vice president, however demanding and aggravating she may have been.

Remember that as self-appointed gatekeeper of the players' down time, Jeff Van Gundy did not endear himself to Dolan. This board chairman, the one with the perpetually rose-colored glasses, wants everybody he pays to get along.

A Garden employee who has sat in on Dolan-run meetings finds it curious Browne Sanders' threat did not cause the usual Garden lockdown instincts to kick in. The fact Dolan didn't just pay Browne Sanders to keep quiet, says this source, is indication Dolan wanted this public as an excuse to get rid of Thomas. Despite the Garden's so-far backing of its basketball boss, that's an interesting thought, but it sounds a lot more like something Thomas is capable of than Dolan.

Just ask Larry Bird, or Piston teammates who were scared to death of Thomas, or the corporate bosses against whom Thomas maneuvered and lost in Toronto, or the Mom and Pop operators of the CBA whom he ruined. Don Chaney, Allan Houston and Lenny Wilkens were all good persons whose exits were handled by Thomas in callous and Machiavellian manner.

Psychologists will tell you sexual harassment is all about control and Isiah Thomas certainly fits the profile. Common sporting business sense says you get away with almost anything if you win, but Thomas hasn't put together a team or even appears to have any plan that can absolve him.

His time is shrinking. This embarrassment to an owner who hates to be embarrassed should bring it to an end.

01-27-2006, 02:46 PM
Steph laughs at Isiah's suit
Thursday, January 26th, 2006

The four stitches on Stephon Marbury's lower lip and the Knicks' miserable record should be the least of his problems. But the veteran point guard doesn't see it that way. In fact, Marbury says he can "laugh at" the controversy swirling around himself, his family, Isiah Thomas and the team.

Asked yesterday if the events of the past two days were a distraction, Marbury said: "I mean, it's not a distraction to me, and I'm in the paper about as much as Isiah. But I laugh at it. It's a joke to me. I just laugh at it."

Thomas, the Knicks president, is being sued by a former high-ranking Madison Square Garden employee for sexual harassment and discrimination. Marbury was named in the lawsuit for making derogatory comments toward the plaintiff, Anucha Browne Sanders.

Also, Hassan Gonsalves, one of Marbury's two cousins hired by the Knicks' community relations department, was fired for sexually harassing several women on the staff and defrauding the company, according to the lawsuit. The Daily News reported on Thursday that Gonsalves threatened Browne Sanders after he was fired, telling her, "We know you have kids. We know where you live."

Another cousin, Tasheem Ward, is still employed by the team and is well-liked and respected by his co-workers.

Marbury confirmed that Gonsalves was dismissed by Browne Sanders, saying, "Yeah, that happened." He declined, however, to discuss anything relating to the lawsuit or Browne Sanders. The moody point guard, appearing more jovial than usual, smiled as he repeated over and over, "I'm not at liberty to talk about that."

"That's a good line, right?" he added.

Thomas attended practice yesterday in Greenburgh but exited before the media were allowed to enter the room. He was not available for comment.

Marbury believes that the Garden's legal troubles have had no impact on the Knicks, who are 13-27 after losing to the Sacramento Kings in overtime on Wednesday.

"I think guys are probably more frustrated as far as losing," said Marbury, who suffered a cut lip in the loss. "But all of this other stuff, I think everyone is starting to understand this is New York. You can't really go to the bathroom the wrong way. If somebody smells it the wrong way, they're going to write about it.

That's just how it is. I think everyone is getting used to that, and they understand it."

Marbury is standing firmly behind Thomas, who acquired him two years ago from the Phoenix Suns. The deal, Thomas' signature trade as Knicks' president, has yet to result in a playoff victory or a winning record in the regular season.

The close relationship between Marbury and Thomas has created friction in the locker room over the years. Many former teammates felt that Marbury flaunted his ties with Thomas by occasionally sitting out practice or breaking off plays in games without being reprimanded.

Last season, when Lenny Wilkens still was the coach, Marbury gave an impassioned speech to his teammates about pulling together. His impromptu pep talk came right before a morning practice. But as soon as the team took the court, Marbury retreated to the locker room for a massage.

Because of Thomas, Marbury publicly endorsed the hiring of Larry Brown even though he and Brown had clashed at the 2004 Olympics. This season, Brown and Marbury have had two memorable hissing matches that played out in the media. But since last month's loss at Orlando, Marbury has played better and seems to have a better understanding of what Brown wants from his point guard.

According to sources, Thomas is surprised that Marbury hasn't handled the pressure of playing in New York as well as he thought the Brooklyn-born point guard would. Publicly, however, Thomas has gone out of his way to support Marbury even at the expense of losing some credibility with some players.

Marbury is returning that loyalty by saying yesterday that he believes that Thomas will be exonerated of all charges.

"What he always tells me is, if you're true to the game, the game is going to be true to you," Marbury said. "So, whenever you know the truth, the truth lies on top all the time. So, you feel bad that these things are happening, but at the same time, in the back of his mind, he knows what's right."

01-27-2006, 02:50 PM
I've always thought Marbury was stupid....in the uneducated, ignorant, intellectually impoverished sense.

But reading his comments, I start to wonder whether he has some kind of learning disability or other cognitive impairment.

What ghetto idiots he and his lot are.

01-27-2006, 04:33 PM
But reading his comments, I start to wonder whether he has some kind of learning disability or other cognitive impairment.

01-27-2006, 04:50 PM
Isaiah is a tool....a quick perusal of some newspaper reports provides the following:

The NBA likely will launch a probe into allegations that Knicks President Isiah Thomas conspired to get opposing players drunk the night before games, sources told the New York Daily News. A sexual harassment lawsuit accused Thomas of working with concierges at hotels frequented by visiting teams to encourage opposing players to go to certain bars and strip clubs and get drunk the night before a day game. -- New York Daily News

Isiah Thomas' accuser was offered $250,000 to make her harassment claims disappear, a source close to the Knicks president claimed yesterday. -- New York Daily News

Stephon Marbury is standing firmly behind Isiah Thomas, who acquired him two years ago from the Suns. The close relationship between Marbury and Thomas has created friction in the locker room over the years. Many former teammates felt that Marbury flaunted his ties with Thomas by occasionally sitting out practice or breaking off plays in games without being reprimanded. -- New York Daily News

01-27-2006, 04:59 PM
likely will launch a probe
this made me laugh...

01-27-2006, 05:41 PM
One thing is for sure: there is absolutely no way Isiah would've made advances toward Sanders. I mean, have you seen her pic?


01-27-2006, 08:13 PM
One thing is for sure: there is absolutely no way Isiah would've made advances toward Sanders. I mean, have you seen her pic?


What a total load of horseshit. Here we go again. Immediately attack the woman when a sexual assault/harrassment occurs. I am so sick of this kind of stupidity.

01-27-2006, 08:17 PM
I'm still trying to figure out why any NBA team would hire Isiah Thomas to do ANYTHING for them. I mean, just look at his record since his playing career ended. Failure after failure...

01-27-2006, 10:18 PM
What a total load of horseshit. Here we go again. Immediately attack the woman when a sexual assault/harrassment occurs. I am so sick of this kind of stupidity.

Um, I wasn't really attacking her... just pointing out that she isn't the most attractive woman in the world, which makes her case a bit weak.

I mean, Isiah is the GM of the Kicks! He could have any woman he wants in New York!! (OK, not literally, but you know what I mean...)

Big Boy Laroux
01-27-2006, 10:55 PM
vj, that post is what's weak. A woman's appearance has no bearing in whether an assault accusation is "weak".

01-27-2006, 11:01 PM
Um, I wasn't really attacking her... just pointing out that she isn't the most attractive woman in the world, which makes her case a bit weak.

I mean, Isiah is the GM of the Kicks! He could have any woman he wants in New York!! (OK, not literally, but you know what I mean...)

This is quite possibly the dumbest thing I've read since Deus was banned. How old are you exactly?

01-28-2006, 12:10 AM
Shoouldn't we at least explain to VJZ whiy her perceived level of attractiveness is irrelevant?

VJZ, like rape and sexual assault, sexual harassment isn't always about sexual attraction. In a lot of cases it's more of an attempt to express dominance or exercise control over someone. And this is TOTALLY in keeping with everything we know about Zeke as a behind-the-scenes manipulator and conniver, as a player, as an executive and as a business person. I believe every word of the complaint against him.

And as for attractiveness, Browne-Sanders is AT LEAST as attractive a woman as Zeke is a man. Let's face it--neither one of them are what you'd call "lookers" in the classical sense. She's got a little bit of a masculine presence to her, but....ya know, some men like that in a woman, dominatrix complex and all. If you don't know what I'm talking about, Google it.

For his part, Zeke has always looked a bit feminine to me....something about his face---more transvestite than boyish. One coat of lipstick and he could walk proudly on 9th Ave.

In any case, she's just about as big as he is, so he may well have been sexually intimidated by her.

Now, she is reported to have THE top sexual harrassment attorney representing her. She won't lose. The Knicks will settle rather than have this go to trial and have all their skid-marked corporate underwear out on display.

Zeke, Cleopatra Jones is gonna kick yo' a$$.

01-29-2006, 10:21 AM
So when is Isiah ever going to get charged with raping the CBA and leaving that for dead?

But seriously, I can't wait for this guy's career to be over. His career after his playing days has been an absolute failure. Hopefully, this is just the straw that broke the camel's back. I wouldn't be upset at all if I never saw him associated with the game of basketball again.

01-29-2006, 11:52 AM
Before Accusations, Success in Business and Basketball
She grew up in Brooklyn, honed her basketball game against guys on the Parade Grounds and averaged 25 points a game at St. Saviour High School. As a Northwestern senior, she scored 45 points, had 17 rebounds and blocked 6 shots in a 74-69 victory over St. John's at Alumni Hall.

By the time Anucha (which means "goddess" in Ethiopian) Browne Sanders's college career ended in 1985, she was the leading scorer in Big Ten women's basketball history, with 2,307 points.

"She was very determined and very focused and could get many jobs done on the floor," said Don Perrelli, who coached Sanders in her senior year. "She could dribble for a big player, and back then, 6-1 was big, shoot from the outside and play inside the paint like no other player I'd ever seen."

Browne Sanders, 43, still plays basketball at a Y.M.C.A. in Summit, N.J. But her on-court abilities are not what have elevated her to fame.

Earlier this week, she filed suit in federal court against Isiah Thomas and Madison Square Garden, accusing Thomas of sexually harassing her when she was the Knicks' senior vice president for marketing and business operations.

She was fired Jan. 19 after the Garden said that its investigation could not substantiate her accusations.

Since the lawsuit was filed, Thomas has denied the allegations against him. Steve Mills, the president of MSG Sports, who was her supervisor, said that Browne Sanders had demanded $6.5 million to leave the Garden quietly.

Before last night's Magic-Knicks game, Thomas again maintained his innocence, while a spokesman for the Garden, Barry Watkins, said that Thomas had the full support of James L. Dolan, the Garden's chairman.

Browne Sanders said she had had a strong relationship with Mills before Thomas's arrival as the Knicks' president of basketball operations in December 2003, but she said Mills did nothing when she told him that Thomas had berated her and made sexual advances.

Mills offered strong praise for Browne Sanders in 2002 when she was honored by the Sports Business Journal, a weekly trade magazine, as one of its top 40 executives under the age of 40.

"What makes Anucha stand out is her competitiveness," Mills said. "You see it in everything she does, whether it's her day-to-day work, or when she's on the Garden floor playing basketball with the guys from our ad sales group."

He said some of the men were shocked by her basketball skills.

Sanders wanted to be a figure skater but by eighth grade, she favored basketball. "I liked it better," she said in response to e-mailed questions. "I have a slightly better physique for basketball than Michelle Kwan."

She said she developed her shooting touch in high school, and her skills caught the eye of Perrelli, who was then the women's coach at St. John's. "I would have been happy for her to come to St. John's," he said.

Stephanie Chambers-Duckmann, a teammate at Northwestern, said, "She was a great leader who knew how to take over a game."

There was no W.N.B.A. at the time, which compelled Browne Sanders to start her business career. She worked at Eastman Kodak, then at I.B.M., where she held positions in marketing the Olympics when the computer giant was a worldwide sponsor. Among other things, she developed the company's in-house Olympic Web site.

"She was very knowledgeable, enthusiastic and ambitious," said Eli Primrose-Smith, who was then I.B.M.'s vice president for worldwide Olympic sponsorship. "She really wanted to make a name for herself."

She added that after evaluating the work of its Olympic team after the Nagano Winter Games in 1998, Browne Sanders stayed with the unit two years later in Sydney. "She was very good at seeking out people in power to get their advice and say, very upfront, 'O.K, what do I have to do to get to the next stage?' " Primrose-Smith said. "She would bluntly say, 'What do I need to do to improve?' "

Another supervisor at I.B.M., George Conte, described Browne Sanders as "incredibly ambitious, with a tremendous ability to work with other people."

She was recruited to the Garden by Mills in 2000 to be the Knicks' vice president for marketing and was promoted to senior vice president in 2002. She said in her lawsuit that in 2002 and 2003, she received the highest possible rating, a "5," on her company evaluations.

But last March, after a year in which she made accusations against Thomas, her evaluation fell to a "4."

She was the person in charge of finding new ways to sell Knicks tickets after years of sellouts gave way to empty seats. And Thomas reportedly refused to let her use Knicks players in a current advertising campaign; instead, the campaign uses a series of life-sized cardboard cutouts devised by an outside agency.

"I always found Anucha to be a serious-minded, sober executive, very conscientious in her work and very dedicated to advancing the image and prestige of the New York Knicks," said Seth Abraham, the former president of Madison Square Garden/Radio City Entertainment. "While we did not always agree on marketing strategies, her opinions were always reasoned and well thought-out."

The ugliness of her sexual harassment accusations against Thomas surprised Chambers-Duckmann and Perrelli.

"I do not question her integrity," Chambers-Duckmann said, "and I see no reason for her to make things up."

Perrelli added: "I'd be totally shocked if anything came out to show that she wasn't telling the truth. This is a class individual. I had to do a double-take when I saw it on television."

01-29-2006, 03:46 PM
"I do not question her integrity," Chambers-Duckmann said, "and I see no reason for her to make things up."

Perrelli added: "I'd be totally shocked if anything came out to show that she wasn't telling the truth. This is a class individual. I had to do a double-take when I saw it on television."

Pretty strong support there.

01-29-2006, 03:53 PM
Larry Brown's support of Zeke was:

"I've known him since high school. We'll see how this plays out."

01-29-2006, 03:55 PM
I think he must have editted out the middle sentence where he wonders if Zeke is guilty since he knows he is capable of it.

01-30-2006, 09:59 AM
anyone else been threatened by Isaih yet??? Santa Clause, Easter Bunny, Nuns?

Big Boy Laroux
01-30-2006, 02:21 PM
ha ha ha. what a ringing endorsement... "I've known him since high school"

01-30-2006, 09:23 PM
Isiah's 19-year-old love child takes shot at dad he's never met
I should get to say two words to my father: 'Hello. Goodbye.'
By DARREN EVERSON in Bloomfield Hills, Mich.,
and DAVE GOLDINER in New York
DAILY NEWS STAFF WRITERS http://www.nydailynews.com/ips_rich_content/47-thomas.jpg Isiah Thomas
Isiah Thomas' teenage love child said yesterday he's long ached to meet his famous father - but the embattled Knick boss has denied him a shot.

Speaking out for the first time, Marc Dones, 19, an aspiring writer whose mom had a brief affair with a then-engaged Thomas two decades ago, said he still pines for an opportunity to get to know the father he's only seen on TV.

"People should be parents. That's it," Dones said. "By the time I turn 20, I should get to say two words to my father: 'Hello. Goodbye.' If that's it, then I should get those two."
Dones said he's called Thomas twice, but never got a response.

"I'd like to speak to him. I'd like to know him," said the dreadlocked young poet. "But that's not the situation I'm in."

Dones broke his silence just days after Thomas, a married father of two, was accused in a federal lawsuit of sexually harassing Anucha Browne Sanders, a Knicks executive.

Thomas, 44, has denied the allegations.
"I don't know anything about any of this. It has nothing to do with me," Dones said. "I don't have an opinion about what kind of person he is. I don't know him."

But the well-spoken teenager, who wore jeans and a T-shirt and held a cigarette as he stood outside his family's townhouse in suburban Detroit, had plenty else to say - and revealed planning to write a memoir about his unique family life.

Dones is 5-foot-10 and has an athletic build, but said he's not interested in being a star athlete like his Hall of Fame dad.

"It's just chasing a ball," he said of basketball, the sport that made his father rich and famous. "I don't know why you'd do that."

A talented poet and writer, Marc Dones went to the Roeper School, an elite private academy outside Detroit. He plans to attend the New School University in New York this fall.

His mother, Jenni Dones, got pregnant during a 1985 affair with Thomas, just two months before the then-NBA superstar player married his current wife, Lynn.

Jenni Dones has claimed she had a three- or four-month relationship with the Detroit Pistons All-Star, but her lawyer agreed with Thomas' version that it was a one-night stand.

After Marc Dones was born in 1986, Thomas admitted being the father and agreed to pay $52,000, plus $2,764.78 per month until Marc turned 18 - and then a lump sum of $100,000 to the youth.

Jenni Dones later sued for more support, claiming that her lawyer had failed to get a good enough deal from Thomas.

Again, the NBA star agreed to fork over more dough to support his child.

"He acted honorably, as far as I'm concerned," said Elbert Hatchett, the lawyer who represented Jenni Dones and was later sued by her.

Jenni Dones, who was at a family funeral yesterday, was not reachable for comment.

Kevin Mintzer, a spokesman for Sanders, declined to comment yesterday as did Raynor Grossman, a spokeswoman for Thomas.

No one answered the door at the Westchester mansion where Thomas lives with his wife and their two teenage children.

Jenni Dones' mother, Edwynna Anderson, was a prominent lawyer, a trailblazing black journalist in Michigan and a Detroit prosecutor.

Jenni Dones, a single mom, went on to have another child, now 13. She once ran a program in the urban studies center at Wayne State University in Detroit but apparently no longer works there.

She filed twice for bankruptcy protection, most recently in December, legal records show.

But Marc Dones called his mom a "very strong woman" who had long since moved on from the affair with Thomas.

"My mom doesn't believe in regret, which is shaping a lot of my dealing with it," he said. "There's no point. It happened. It's over."

"She's more than capable of dealing with my father, for one, and dealing with the world, for two," he added.

Even without a father, the teenager says he's had a good life and is resigned that he might never get to know his dad, who is running the struggling Knicks.

"We've never had a relationship," Dones said of Thomas. "I don't think we will. ... My life is completely separate."

He's already had work published on TheDetroiter.com, an artsy Web site in the Motor City.

"What amazes me, for his age, is his grasp of poetry," said Eric Novack, the site's literary editor. "He is an incredible young man."

Despite Thomas' refusal to have any contact with him, Dones said he won't allow himself to be eaten up with bitterness.

"That's my life - there's nothing I can do about it," he said. "It doesn't upset me. When I was younger, yes. Having known it no other way, there's no reason to be bitter about it.

"I don't hold him any malice. I don't have any ill will," he added as he hustled the family's dog, Charlie, a black Labrador retriever and Shih Tzu mix, into the backyard.

"It's hard to have any ill will toward someone who you don't have a relationship with."

01-30-2006, 09:30 PM
By MARC BERMAN January 30, 2006 -- ATLANTA — Anucha Browne Sanders and Frank Murphy are listed as senior vice presidents with full-page bios in the Knicks media guide.

Both worked under Isiah Thomas and both are gone now. Sanders left before filing a sexual harassment suit against Thomas. Two sources said Murphy's departure also came under suspect circumstances, despite the club's company line that he retired.

Two sources said Murphy, the senior VP of Basketball Operations who managed the team's salary cap and structured contracts, agreed to a "retirement settlement" late in preseason only after a "wild argument" with Thomas.

"It's been a well-kept secret in the organization what the argument was over," one source said. "Even the top executives like Anucha didn't know."

A Knick official said Murphy actually was the liason between Sanders and Thomas. Hence, Sanders and Thomas did not speak often, the Knick official said.

The Knicks say several different people have inherited Murphy's job. Murphy, 64, had worked for the Knicks since 1990.

"I have no comment," Murphy said. "I'm just enjoying retirement."

Meanwhile, according to a Garden employee, Sanders' ego was so huge that she demanded her full
page in the media guide, even if she was just in marketing.

Knicks staffers, according to Garden sources, also found it unusual she used to sit next to former GM Scott Layden in the "war room" on draft night. Sanders periodically would travel with the club, but Thomas put a stop to it when he came aboard.

01-31-2006, 12:48 AM
Isiah's 19-year-old love child takes shot at dad he's never met
I should get to say two words to my father: 'Hello. Goodbye.'

Interesting timing...it's like one last "F*ck You" before the kid shrugs his shoulders and gives up.

01-31-2006, 09:51 AM
Interesting timing...it's like one last "F*ck You" before the kid shrugs his shoulders and gives up.
What's interesting is his intention to write a memoir, as well as his plan to attend the New School in New York. That's a somewhat unusual choice for a kid from Detroit, who could, presumably, go a lot of other places.

Gotta wonder if biological donor Isiah will still be around by then, or if he'll have blown town again. It's like Zeke thinks he can just write a monthly check and then turn his head.

What kind of man totally rejects a son like that? Not much of a man at all.

01-31-2006, 10:11 AM
What kind of man totally rejects a son like that? Not much of a man at all.

I knew Thomas was a basketball moron....but I always thought he had a bit of calss to him as a man....but wow....how can you father a child and just not care?

01-31-2006, 10:16 PM
Thomas is a total ass. wow.

01-31-2006, 11:30 PM
Thomas is a total ass. wow.
he's definitely the U2 of the NBA.