James Dolan slyly plants a bug in Carmelo Anthony's warmups. (AP/Kathy Willens)
Prior to a Sunday afternoon win over the visiting New Orleans Hornets, the New York Knicks were in the midst of a bad stretch, having lost three straight games, four of their last six and six of their last nine since Christmas Day. With the Knicks struggling and looking less like a potential championship-contending unit than a banged-up, gassed and frazzled collection of individuals, league observers have been keeping a close eye on the Knicks, and especially star forward Carmelo Anthony — and one observer, in particular, sounds like he's keeping a closer eye than most.
New York Knicks owner James Dolan reportedly "made a few MSG Network employees perform a surreptitious duty" during the Knicks' Friday night loss to the Chicago Bulls at Madison Square Garden, according to Dave D'Alessandro of the Newark Star-Ledger:
Read More »from Knicks owner James Dolan had employees record Carmelo Anthony’s in-game talk, according to report
Two audio technicians were stationed at two corners of the court — one a few feet just behind the Knicks bench, the other diagonally opposite — and they were holding those umbrella-shaped contraptions known as parabola microphones, which fed the audio into a DAT recorder on the truck on the loading dock.
These guys had one directive from Dolan: Record every syllable Carmelo Anthony utters and absorbs while he’s on the court and on the bench, the Madison Square Garden CEO ordered them, and send the tape directly to me.
The purpose of this command was unclear, but Dolan must have had a good reason to eavesdrop on Melo’s interactions. Was it to luxuriate in the poetic musings of his most valuable player, even though he is far from his most voluble player? Was it a teaching tool, so his coaches could school Melo on the potential hazards of courtside misconduct?
Or perhaps it was done to furnish proof to the NBA that his meal ticket is now a verbal target, particularly with notorious motormouths such as Joakim Noah and Nate Robinson in town that night for a full-court yakfest?