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Thursday, June 4, 2020

Charles Oakley says he would not sit with James Dolan, wants apology

James Dolan

Charles Oakley and James Dolan may have worked things out to the point where Oakley is no longer banned from Madison Square Garden, but the former New York Knicks star says he has no intention of sitting courtside with Dolan anytime soon.

Oakley appeared on “The Dan LeBatard Show” Tuesday amid reports that his very brief ban has been lifted, and he was asked if he is open to attending a Knicks game as Dolan’s guest.

“Right now, no,” Oakley said. “I told him yesterday. If a swimming pool is filled with water, it takes a while before you drain it. It doesn’t just go away.”

Oakley acknowledged that he has criticized Dolan in the past and said he discussed that with the Knicks owner when they met on Monday. However, he still wants a public apology.

“I have never asked for nothing,” Oakley said. “I love the fans in New York. They’ve been supportive. One of the things I told the commissioner, I want to have a press conference and I want him to apologize to me and the fans. They’ve had my back and they’ve felt the pain and I really appreciate the people all around who’ve had my back.”

Two very influential NBA figures tried to help Oakley and Dolan bury the hatchet this week, but it sounds like the mediation was not totally successful. Oakley is still upset over a press release the Knicks put out that implied he has an alcohol abuse issue. You can read Oakley’s response to that release here.

Dolan created a public relations nightmare by having Oakley escorted out of Madison Square Garden and arrested. Any frustrations Oakley has hurled at Dolan and the team are shared by the fans, which is why they immediately took Oakley’s side. Don’t be surprised if Dolan extends the olive branch in public at some point in the future.

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