By Marc BermanApril 27, 2014 | 10:06pm
Knicks executive and former player Larry Johnson had a decidedly different but still strong reaction to the racially insensitive remarks Clippers owner Donald Sterling is alleged to have made.
On Saturday night, Johnson tweeted: “Black people your Focusing on the wrong thing. We should be focusing on having our own, Own team own League! To For Self!!’’
The initial indication was Johnson was calling for an all-African-American league complete with black ownership. It wasn’t the first time Johnson, who is black, concerned himself with the fact the NBA’s ownership is mostly white while its players are mostly black.
During the 1999 NBA Finals between the Knicks and Spurs, Johnson caused a stir by saying: “We’ve got a lot of rebellious slaves on this [Knicks] team.”
When asked at the time why he referred to his teammates as slaves, Johnson said: “I’ve got to explain that to you? We don’t go with the mainstream.’’
Johnson was hired by the Knicks two years ago and serves many roles as a basketball and business operations representative. It’s unclear what his role will be under new team president Phil Jackson.
Larry Johnson (inset) suggested players form an all-black league in the wake of the alleged comments by Clippers owner Donald Sterling.Photo: AP (2)
In his first comments on getting fired by the Knicks one week ago, Mike Woodson said it was “a dream come true’’ to coach them and he plans to coach again.
“When I look at my situation, I started as a player, I was drafted by the Knicks 34 years ago,’’ Woodson said as an NBATV guest analyst Sunday. “So, to be able to come back and coach the Knicks, I never dreamed of doing that. It’s like a dream come true. And the last two years, prior to coming into this season, was a good two seasons for our ball club and our fans. And this year things just didn’t work out. Sometimes in life things just don’t work out according to plan, but I look at it, overall, it was a good run.’’
Woodson added it was “a great experience’’ and thanked Knicks owner James Dolan. “Sometimes organizations, they move on, they go in a different direction, and that’s what they decided to do with my situation,’’ Woodson said. “So, I got to move on and close the chapter in this book and get ready for a new chapter because I still want to coach and love what I do.”