Decline And Fall

How much of a soap opera are the Knicks? Let's just say coach Larry Brown started as The Guiding Light and ended up in General Hospital
April 23, 2006

Brooklyn nativeLarry Brown signs a five-year, $50 million deal to coach the New York Knicks.--July 27, 2005

Aug. 1 "Iguarantee [New York] will be in the playoffs. Stephon [Marbury will] be anAll-Star under Larry." --Magic Johnson

Oct. 8 "[G.M.]Isiah [Thomas] has done a great job improving the team...." --James Dolan,Madison Square Garden chairman

Oct. 25 "Thisis fun. I enjoy coaching and teaching, and we have so many young kids that wantto get better." --Brown

Nov. 4 "Thepeople are hyped up. We're crack addicts who haven't had our fix for awhile." --Spike Lee, director and superfan

Season begins withan OT loss to the Boston Celtics. --Nov. 2

Nov. 4 (Knicksrecord: 0-2) "I have no clue who to play.... I'm not thinking aboutmatchups. [I] just need to find out how to put guys in positions they can besuccessful." --Brown

Nov. 17 (2-6)"If [Brown] wants me to play a different way ... I'm down for it. But if welose, I'm not going to be happy playing like that." --Marbury

Feb. 1 (14-30)"Coaches coach execution, they're not supposed to coach effort.... I'vealways been places where I knew I could count on the effort." --Brown

Feb. 7 (14-33)"Larry and Isiah, they need to get on the same page.... It's a circusthere." --Forward Antonio Davis, after being traded to the Raptors

Thomas is sued forsexual harassment by former vice president of marketing Anucha Browne Sanders;Thomas denies the charges. --Jan. 24

Feb. 28 (15-41)"You don't bring in players ... that can't play a style that is comfortablefor the coach." --Brown

Knicks havehighest payroll, worst record in NBA. --March 1

March 1 (15-42)"I believe in the plan, I believe in the strategy.... Maybe some peoplethink I'm brain dead...." --Dolan

March 11 (17-44)"[Bobcats G.M. and coach Bernie] Bickerstaff does a great job of instilling[confidence] in his players. He allows a lot of freedom." --Marbury

March 14 (17-45)"You want freedom? Now how are you going to have freedom with thosestats?" --Brown

March 15 (18-45)"I think it's personal now. I don't think it's about basketball ...."--Marbury

March 15 (18-45)"You're the best guard in the league, and the team's 17-45? Yeah, it's thecoach's fault." --Brown

March 29 (19-51)"That's worse." --Fred Klein, 71-year-old season-ticket holder,comparing the Knicks to his three hip replacements, ankle and shoulderoperations, triple bypass and two spinal fusions to The New York Times

April 2 (19-53)"Hell. Miserable. Pathetic. And sad." --Brown, asked to describe hisseason in 25 words or less

April 4 (19-54)"I played for the Clippers and we were bad. But I've never been aroundnothing like this."--Guard Quentin Richardson

April 4 (19-54)"Besides my mom passing away when I was 18, this is top three." --GuardSteve Francis, describing the worst experiences of his life

April 9 (22-54)"That I should've been a history teacher." --Brown, on what he learnedthis season

April 13 (22-56)"I don't care what [Brown] wants to hear.... I played like Stephon Marburythis year. And next year, I'm going to play like Starbury." --Marbury

"Believe me,this ain't going to be the same team [next year]." --Brown

Brown, sufferingfrom an acid reflux condition, leaves during a loss to the Cavaliers and spendsthe night in a Cleveland hospital. --April 13

April 14 (22-57)"I think that everybody would have to realize that the type of stress Larryhas had, which is not common to his career, has been trying on him." --JoeGlass, Brown's agent

Brown misses histhird straight game, but the team says it hopes he will return for the seasonfinale--amid speculation that he is plotting his exit strategy. --April 17

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''Over 80 percent of respondents said the Packersshould trade Favre." --TRYING THEIR PATIENCE, PAGE 30

 

ILLUSTRATIONILLUSTRATIONS BY JOHN CUNEOJULY 2005 ILLUSTRATIONILLUSTRATIONS BY JOHN CUNEOAPRIL 2006
HOLE YARDS PAR R1 R2 R3 R4
OUT
HOLE YARDS PAR R1 R2 R3 R4
IN
Eagle (-2)
Birdie (-1)
Bogey (+1)
Double Bogey (+2)