Donnie Walsh has been nothing short of incredible for the New York Knicks since he became president of basketball operations in April, 2008.
I know, I know, the standards for success weren't really too high when he came in. Walsh took over for Isiah Thomas, who made so many terrible moves in his five years that it makes me sick just thinking about it–so things could only get better from there.
And they did.
Knicks fans had been aching a contender since the days of Patrick Ewing. Actually, the devoted followers of the team would have accepted even just a watchable team. Anything would've been better than the overrated, overpaid, lazy players they were putting out there.
Walsh began the slow, tedious rebuilding process by getting rid of Thomas (who he named head coach of the Indiana Pacers eight years earlier), and never looked back.
He waited out unwise and useless contracts, signed key players, made smart trades and hired competent staff.
Perhaps the most accomplishing task he has performed is enduring New York fans, New York media and worst of all: James Dolan.
No matter who Walsh selects in a draft, fans will boo. He was badgered daily about when he would finally acquire Carmelo Anthony. He fixed a broken organization, only to be ran out of town by an idiotic owner.
Clearly, Walsh has put up with more than your average GM could handle.
Now, as he leaves, let's look back on the highlights of how Donnie Walsh repaired the years of what felt like irreversible damage.