The Knicks' abrupt decision to punt Glen Grunwald and bring Steve Mills back into the fold still has me a little down, and a lot perplexed. I came to respect Grunwald's management, even if there were missteps along the way, so I'm sad to see him go. On the other hand, Grunwald was merely the head of a decision-making clan, and the rest of that clan remains. That's modestly reassuring, if still pretty weird. Mills, whose apparent charisma dwarfs his apparent basketball acumen, has ostensibly been installed as a figurehead-- someone who can keep Carmelo Anthony around while attracting other stars years in the future. I don't know if Dolan's right about that, but I reckon there are ample team-improving alternatives to just making friends with the right people. You know, designing and following a good plan for for more than a few months might work. It has a good track record.
Beyond all that, it's funny and typical of Dolan that his organization's idea of an appropriate figurehead is a pretty ugly sort. Mills presided in some vague manner over one of the worst eras in Knicks history and came down on the unseemlier side of the Anucha Browne Sanders case. In a way, Mills is a sorta bootleg Isiah Thomas. Whatever his reputation is among players, it's rightfully bad among Knicks fans.
On days like yesterday, we're forcibly dunked into Dolan's world to recall the politics governing the basketball. We're reminded that we're fools to be emotionally invested in a petulant billionaire's plaything. I loathe the politics, and I'm not even convinced these are such sound politics. From the firing to the hiring to the timing of the whole thing, this smells like shit to me.
But whatever. Most of the time, it's basketball, and the basketball lately has been increasingly fruitful and quite a lot of fun-- to the point that you can almost ignore the politics. Once events like Thursday's settle, we can return to our foolishness. It's fine. It's more fun above the surface.
Questionable as this move's timing may have been, it allows us little time to dwell. Basketball is very nearly here, and we're looking at a team that's both bound for a winning season and restocked with wonderful characters. This man is on our team now:
This is going to be fun. Dolan will assert himself and plunge us back into the politics again sometime-- perhaps soon-- but between yesterday's truth-swirly and the next one, this is our team, and it's a good one.