The name Patrick Ewing is synonymous with New York Knicks basketball, but not everyone seems to care about his legacy when it comes to their core protocols.
During a press conference for the NCAA’s Big East Quarterfinals, the nearly 7-foot Knicks legend voiced his discontentment with being stopped by Madison Square Garden’s security as he was trying to enter the building. Ewing,who is now the head coach of the Georgetown Hoyas men’s basketball team, said he’s had enough and plans to discuss the incident with the Knicks’ owner, James Dolan.
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“I thought this was my building,” Ewing said, following the Hoyas’ 72-71 victory over a number-one-ranked Villanova. “I feel terrible that I’m being stopped… asking for passes. Everyone in this building should know who the hell I am.”
“I’m gonna have to call Mr. Dolan and say ‘Geez, is my number in the rafters or what?” Ewing continued.
According to the New York Post, Ewing did in fact get in touch with Dolan. Madison Square Garden issued the following statement on March 11:
“Jim and Patrick have a long-standing relationship; they spoke this afternoon and reaffirmed that,” MSG said. “We all know, respect and appreciate what he means to The Garden and New York. Good luck to him and his Hoyas in the Big East semi-finals.”
This is not the first time Dolan and the Knicks organization have been under fire. Last March, Knicks enthusiast Spike Lee said he would no longer attend Knicks games at MSG, following an incident with security. During an interview with ESPN, Lee said he used the same employee entrance for 28 years. After his ticket was scanned, security met Lee and directed him to exit and re-enter the building a different way.
“Arrest me like my brother Charles Oakley,” said Spike to security.
Lee was referring to a 2017 incident when another former Knicks player Charles Oakley was put out of MSG after a tussle with security. Dolan and the arena were sued for false imprisonment, defamation, battery, and violating the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), per Sports Illustrated.