With Stephon Marbury Gone, It's Officially the End of an Era in NY
There are a lot of symbols that will forever act as representations of hard times of the past. The Berlin Wall, Watergate, the field at Gettysburg, and Stephon Marbury.
With every teammate he alienated, with every coach he turned against him, and with every team he killed, Stephon Marbury cemented himself as the symbol of ineptitude, failure, and selfishness during his tenure in New York.
He was once the symbol of hope, change, and progress for the Knicks. He was Isiah's first major roster change, representing a time where the Knicks would return to the NBA's elite. Throughout his first year on the Knicks, he brought them out of the NBA dregs and back into the playoffs.
However, as soon as one could say "team cancer," the Knicks were swept by the Nets. This was a sign of things to come, with Marbury getting his stats at the expense of his team winning.
At first, Steph was viewed as the reemergence of the great NYC point guard, finally playing at home where he belonged. Born and bred in Coney Island, Brooklyn, he added his name to a long list of other great New York City PG's, such as Kenny Anderson, Mark Jackson, Nate Archibald, and Jesus Shuttlesworth (if Philly can love Rocky, we can love Jesus).
He dropped buckets, dished and dazzled, and for a slight moment, escaped the idea that he was just a player, but would never be a winner. He won over one of the toughest crowds in the world in his first few months, with everyone believing he could potentially be a savior for the struggling NY franchise.
This mirage would soon end. The next season, Marbury would claim his first Knicks coach on his soon to be long list of casualties. Midway through the year, Lenny Wilkens, renowned for his cool demeanor and his record for all time wins, resigned as the Knicks coach.
The Knicks would fail to make the playoffs, posting a bad but not dismal 33-49 record.
During the '05-'06 season, Marbury showed his true colors. He constantly fought with Larry Brown, who to Steph's defense, did not help the situation. However, Marbury turned the locker room into a sanctuary of mediocrity and carelessness, with the Knicks tanking the entire season after an 0-5 start.
Not to be outdone by his past histrionics, the best of Marbury's tenure was yet to come.
During the following offseason, Marbury was quoted as calling himself the best PG in the NBA. Not only was he cocky, but with this self promoted coronation as king of the NBA point guards, he also became a laughingstock among coaches, analysts, fans and players alike.
With Isiah Thomas taking over as coach, Marbury began to enjoy playing for a coach who would do anything to prove his first and most major roster move was going to be a success. Marbury had free reign on the court, and produced pretty good stats.
However, just like with every other team he was on, the Knicks floundered their way to a 33-49 record.
If anyone thought that the Knicks could not get worse, they were horribly mistaken.
In Marbury's most ridiculous example of his lack of normal human emotions, such as compassion, responsibility or common sense, Starbury alienated one of his last friends and supporters by selling out Isiah Thomas and the entire Knicks organization during the sexual harassment lawsuit filed by former Knicks employee Anucha Brown Sanders.
Steph and Isiah's buddy buddy relationship was now over, and it soon resulted in complete catastrophe, even by the standards of the Isiah era New York Knicks.
During a flight to Phoenix, Isiah and Marbury came very close to an old fashioned battle of fisticuffs. Stephon was told by the maligned Knicks coach, GM, and dictator that he would not be starting. Steph responded by threatening to reveal Isiah's deepest, darkest, and probably fairly weird secrets, and was quickly sent home.
The next game, Stephon was inexplicably placed into the starting lineup by his former friend and the Knicks weak leader. Finally, Marbury had tag-teamed the complete destruction of a team with Isiah Thomas.
The rest of that season was a blur of horrible basketball, in team fighting, "Fire Isiah" chants and bone spurs in his ankle that would keep Steph out for the second half of the season.
With new coaching and management, Steph's tenure in NY was doomed. As Starbury was bought out yesterday, during which he pulled Mike D'antoni from practice (his final act to try to bring down a resurgent and hopeful Knicks team), the collective exhale of New York Basketball fans could be heard.
Steph, all I have to say is, I hope you do to the Celts what you did to NY. You may be the only person in the world who doesn't deserve to play in the NBA. I hope, for your sake, that the Eighteen plus million dollars that you extorted from the Knicks this year can buy you happiness.
With the crumbling of the Berlin wall, the world was able to see the light in a new day of democracy and freedom. With the departure of Stephon Marbury, Knicks fans and basketball fans alike can rejoice with the symbol of hope; the hope that someday soon, the Knicks, an NBA staple, will be back in the headlines for the right reasons rather than the wrong ones.
Stephon Marbury joins a list of revered professional athletes, along with Terrell Owens, Chad Johnson, Sean Avery and Ryan Leaf. These are guys that regardless of their talent (discounting Ryan Leaf of course), individually ruined their respective teams for multiple years.
During his time in NY, he went through six different coaches (Herb Williams twice, as both a interim coach and head coach). Unfortunately, it cannot be counted how many players he turned against him, but its just a hunch that the list might be too long to count.
For some people, words cannot fully describe their attributes, whether positive or negative. But for Stephon Marbury, there are many words, that when combined in the right way can do so pretty effectively. I am still adding to this list, but so far I've come up with: horrible, ridiculous, comedic, infamous, malignant and pathetic.
Unfortunately, as shown by the blood sucking Celtics, who have begun to believe in "Just Win Baby", unwanted is not one of those words, even though it should be.
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