With the entire country watching, the two biggest professional sports franchises in New York City made a very profound statement this past Wednesday. It’s just too bad it wasn’t the right one.
By welcoming Alex Rodriguez back with open arms and allowing Stephon Marbury to play against the Los Angeles Clippers after each turned his back on his respective team, the Yankees and the Knicks let everyone know that one player can be larger than a franchise.
It started with Alex Rodriguez that afternoon when reports came out that he wanted to return to the Bronx after opting out of his contract two weeks ago. It was as if ARod had an epiphany and now, suddenly, he was ready make amends for his selfish behavior that naturally, was pinned on a greedy agent.
And the Yanks bit hard. No longer were we hearing about how Rodriguez didn’t deserve to be a Yankee, how he was no Derek Jeter, like Hank Steinbrenner said after the soon-to-be American League MVP left the team. That firm stance the Yankees said they were taking against their third baseman was bending, and now the “past was in the past.”
It’s funny because that pretty much exactly what Isiah Thomas said Wednesday night after he allowed Marbury to play 34 minutes just 24 hours after the embattled point guard packed up and went home because he wasn’t starting. Starbury was fined but not suspended for quitting on his team.
What worse is the report that came from Yahoo’s Johnny Ludden, which said that Thomas told the Knicks that if even one player didn’t want Marbury back, then he would not play.
Mid way through the first quarter, I suppose, the past became the past.
And now Rodriguez seems destined to be Yankee again and the un-tradeable Marbury will remain the Knicks’ point guard, reminding us all that their definitely is a “me” in team.
As they move forward, both these franchises deserve everything they get.
Just Say No to Alex Rodriguez – Outside the Beltway
I used to think Stephon Marbury was a good person – The Galloway