Isiah Thomas cannot stay out of the news. He has Knicks owner Jim Dolan's ear, with some reports claiming Dolan values his opinion over that of Donnie Walsh's, the only man of the two actually on the Knicks payroll. Now there are rumors of Thomas's influence on the Carmelo Anthony trade, at a time when Thomas should be saving his season at FIU.
Thomas was introduced in December 2003 as president of basketball operations by James Dolan. It was all downhill from there. During the 2005-2006 season, the Knicks posted the second-worst record in the NBA while maintaining the highest payroll in the league.
Adding injury to insult, Thomas dealt two future lottery draft picks that season for the talents of a certain Eddy Curry. Since the 2008-2009 season, Curry has appeared in a total of 10 games.
Dolan even named Isiah head coach after firing Larry Brown in 2006, offering an undisclosed multi-year contract extension.
Thomas repaid Dolan's trust by signing washed-up talents like Jerome James and Jared Jeffries to full mid-level exception contracts, trading away prospect Channing Frye to the Trailblazers for Zach Randolph, and stirring up a sexual harassment controversy within the Garden.
Walsh stepped in after Thomas's rocky tenure at the Garden, becoming a major factor in the rebirth of the Knicks. He's gotten New York in a position of ascendancy in the Eastern Conference—something the Knicks haven't been able to do since, well, before Isiah Thomas took over.
So why are there reports of Isiah Thomas's influence in the Knicks' Carmelo Anthony pursuit?
Perhaps Isiah has a lot of time on his hands now that he's left the Knicks.
Except he's on Florida International University's payroll as their head basketball coach.
Although full of talent, Isiah's FIU squad is a mere 9-17 this season in the meek Sun Belt Conference. This, coming off a 7-25 season in his first year on the job. Isiah even tried accepting a role as a paid consultant to the Knicks this past summer while still on the job at FIU, until David Stern stepped in and restored some sanity.
Isiah Thomas needs to remain far removed from the Carmelo Anthony trade.
He should rather worry about getting his Golden Panthers back into the win column.
James Dolan should let Donnie Walsh continue to clean up Isiah's mess.
And all Knicks fans should be rooting for FIU's success this season—or else Jim Dolan will have a reason to employ Isiah Thomas again.