James Dolan Won’t Rule Out Possibility Of Selling Knicks

While there are no indications that Knicks owner James Dolan plans to sell the franchise anytime soon, he didn’t entirely rule out the possibility during a recent discussion with Ian O’Connor of ESPN.com. Noting that his family has no interest in selling the Knicks, Dolan told O’Connor that he has a responsibility to his shareholders to keep that option open in case the right offer comes along.

“You have a responsibility as the guy who runs the place to deliver on that for them, that’s being open and transparent. And so in that position, I could never say that I wouldn’t consider selling the Knicks,” Dolan said. “Now, my family is not in that position, and they are the majority shareholders. They hold the majority of the vote.

“As a majority owner, I don’t want to sell, either,” Dolan continued. “As the head of the public company, you can’t say you can’t sell, because then you’re telling your shareholders that your own personal feelings about your assets are more important than their money. And they won’t invest with you if you do that.”

When Forbes released its NBA franchise valuations early in 2018, the Knicks were once again viewed as the league’s most valuable team, with an estimated value of $3.6 billion. In his discussion with O’Connor, Dolan acknowledged that there have been some “feelers” of offers that would far exceed that number. However, those feelers never led to any concrete offers for the franchise.

“You hear numbers all the time,” Dolan told O’Connor. “… I think people have sent feelers out, but never any that were pursued. Yeah, [the feelers are] around that number [$5 billion], but those things, it’s like a stock price. It’s only important if you’re going to buy or sell.”

Dolan also addressed a handful of other topics during his wide-ranging conversation with O’Connor, so the piece is worth checking out in full for Knicks fans.

Here are some of the other notable comments from the Knicks’ owner:

On Phil Jackson’s unsuccessful stint as the Knicks’ president of basketball operations:

“I think it was much more about this triangle thing. It was much more about his philosophy, that he couldn’t get the group to buy into it. And I think he got ‘yessed’ a lot. I think they’d be underneath their breath going, ‘This is not a great idea,’ and he got into conflict with some players over it. But I think he tried hard to get his system in. I just don’t think he ever got it in.”

On Jeff Van Gundy telling ESPN that he had interest in the Knicks’ head coaching job this past spring:

“I never heard that. He wanted the job? Look, I’ll do whatever’s necessary to help the team. If [GM] Scott [Perry] and [president of basketball operations] Steve [Mills] said Jeff’s the right guy, fine, but it was really their call. I didn’t meet anybody else other than [David Fizdale]. They said, ‘Look, he’s our pick, I want you to meet him.’ So I did. I wasn’t involved in the selection process at all.”

On whether he has any regrets about having Charles Oakley ejected from Madison Square Garden during a 2017 game:

“He was out of control. Anybody else who went even half the way that he went would have been ejected from the venue. It just got too bad. He had to be taken out.”

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10 thoughts on “James Dolan Won’t Rule Out Possibility Of Selling Knicks

  1. all in ad

    $5B to a worthless owner! Life is not fair. Knicks fans deserve better….but he won’t sell. Steve Kerr didn’t go there because he knew Dolan is a moron and he learned about that dealing with Sarver. You cannot have a good job and a bad boss.

  2. yoyo137

    This would be amazing and would totally increase the chance of KD going there. The fact that LeBron went to a historically great franchise like the Lakers probably influences KD, a guy who has been ridiculed for joining an already historically great team (and who actually cares about his legacy) to go to a historically great franchise who is in a rut to change that and bring them back to the top. If Dolan was no longer there it would be very easy to create a positive culture with Fizdale as the coach and the front office being given the autonomy to make decisions. They need a new owner like Tillman Fertitta who took over the Rockets and was willing to spend the money needed to support the roster and bring in a guy like Chris Paul. KD will age much better on a 4 year deal than CP did and with Kristaps coming back and some young talent flashing potential, it makes NY a much more desirable destination for KD.

  3. This is pretty well known. Since the spin offs of Cablevision and its one time sports and entertainment assets, Dolan’s interest in the sports team part (including the Knicks and Rangers) of his former empire has been waning with each passing year. In 5 years, I don’t think he’ll control the team itself.

  4. mars champion

    I wonder who the best “group” to own the Knicks would be?

    Phil-Isaiah Thomas-Oakley-And that one dude from Entourage should definitely buy the team.

    And Eddie was underrated.

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