Charles Oakley refuses an invitation to Madison Square Garden as long as James Dolan remains in control

Published Categorized as NBA No Comments on Charles Oakley refuses an invitation to Madison Square Garden as long as James Dolan remains in control
Charles Oakley attends the game between the Los Angeles Lakers and the Atlanta Hawks

Charles Oakley, a former player for the New York Knicks, has decided he won’t go back to Madison Square Garden.

He won’t visit during the NBA playoffs, especially not while he’s in a legal battle with Madison Square Garden and the team’s owner, James Dolan. This legal fight stems from an incident in 2017 when Oakley was involved in a scuffle with security at a game and was ejected from the arena.

“I got a message from their lawyer through mine, saying it’s a good idea for me to return to the Garden,” Oakley shared with The Associated Press on Friday.

Oakley, known for his tough play and rebounding skills during the Knicks’ heyday in the 1990s, said he’s not interested in going back while he’s still in conflict with Dolan, even though he still supports the team.

The tension started in 2017 when Oakley was arrested following an argument with MSG security personnel who asked him to leave his seat near Dolan. Oakley was later cleared of misdemeanor assault charges in 2018.

So what would it take for Oakley to attend a game at the Garden? “They need to apologize,” he stated. “Then we can talk. Can Dolan admit he was wrong? Can he admit he made a mistake?”

Oakley has filed assault and battery claims against Dolan, and an updated lawsuit was recently filed. A court order has assigned the case to Magistrate Judge Stewart D. Aaron for handling.

Charles Oakley sits court side prior to the game

“Just be truthful,” Oakley insisted. “Be clear about what you’ve put someone through and how it’s affected their life. This incident really changed my life. My daughter saw me being dragged out of the Garden on the internet. That’s tough for a kid.”

Madison Square Garden has denied all allegations. “There’s no deal. There’s no attempt to settle this quietly,” Oakley emphasized. “They’re not being open about what happened.”

The Knicks are doing well in the NBA playoffs with Jalen Brunson leading the charge. They went into Game 3 against the Indiana Pacers with a 2-0 series lead.

Charles Oakley, who played for the Knicks from 1988-98, helped them get to the NBA Finals but has a strained relationship with the team due to his criticism of Dolan.

“It’s been tough these past seven years,” Oakley said. “Some things were said that weren’t true. The league didn’t intervene. The Commissioner didn’t do anything. But the city supported me, and I supported the fans. I appreciate that.”

Oakley filed lawsuits for assault, battery, false imprisonment, and defamation after an incident at a game on Feb. 8, 2017, where he clashed with security and was arrested.

“I don’t want to cause any trouble. The team is playing well,” Oakley said. “I’ll cheer for the guys. I’m not upset with anyone on the court.”

Recently, Oakley caused some tension with his former teammates when he praised Brunson as the best Knick since Walt Frazier on a SiriusXM show. This comment reached Hall of Famer Patrick Ewing, Oakley’s former Knicks teammate, leading to some back-and-forth between them.

Charles Oakley is shown before an NBA game

Ewing chose not to engage in the debate on another NBA podcast, taking the high road. “They said leadership was a big thing and Patrick wasn’t a great leader,” Oakley told the AP. “Brunson, I think was way more a leader.”

Oakley mentioned that Dolan once said he would retire his jersey, but now Oakley feels Dolan is only trying to make amends for a photo opportunity. “It’s all about him.”

“He doesn’t want to apologize,” Oakley said. “What he did was wrong. But the team is playing well. The Rangers are, too. It’s like 1994 all over again.”

In 1994, the Knicks lost to the Rockets in seven games in the NBA Finals, but the Rangers won the Stanley Cup for the first time since 1940 just days earlier. Here’s the bottom line, Oakley “would love to go” to MSG to see a Knicks game — as long as Dolan made things right.

“I think it’s a bad time to ask me to come to a game,” Oakley said. “The case is still going. You ain’t trying to settle a case. The case is still pending. Take care of your business with the case and let the game worry about the game, you know what I’m saying? You’re not doing anything special. If you were trying to do something special, you wouldn’t have done this.”


By Christopher Kamila

I am an experienced content writer with a specialization in WordPress. I have written engaging articles for various websites that have achieved a total of 5,500 monthly views. In addition, I have played a key role in boosting their organic traffic by 30% and achieving top Google rankings through SEO. My passion lies in creating user-friendly content.

Leave a comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *