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Original Issue

Decline And Fall

How much of a soap opera are the Knicks? Let's just say coach Larry Brown started as The Guiding Light and ended up in General Hospital

Brooklyn nativeLarry Brown signs a five-year, $50 million deal to coach the New York Knicks.--July 27, 2005

Aug. 1 "Iguarantee [New York] will be in the playoffs. Stephon [Marbury will] be anAll-Star under Larry." --Magic Johnson

Oct. 8 "[G.M.]Isiah [Thomas] has done a great job improving the team...." --James Dolan,Madison Square Garden chairman

Oct. 25 "Thisis fun. I enjoy coaching and teaching, and we have so many young kids that wantto get better." --Brown

Nov. 4 "Thepeople are hyped up. We're crack addicts who haven't had our fix for awhile." --Spike Lee, director and superfan

Season begins withan OT loss to the Boston Celtics. --Nov. 2

Nov. 4 (Knicksrecord: 0-2) "I have no clue who to play.... I'm not thinking aboutmatchups. [I] just need to find out how to put guys in positions they can besuccessful." --Brown

Nov. 17 (2-6)"If [Brown] wants me to play a different way ... I'm down for it. But if welose, I'm not going to be happy playing like that." --Marbury

Feb. 1 (14-30)"Coaches coach execution, they're not supposed to coach effort.... I'vealways been places where I knew I could count on the effort." --Brown

Feb. 7 (14-33)"Larry and Isiah, they need to get on the same page.... It's a circusthere." --Forward Antonio Davis, after being traded to the Raptors

Thomas is sued forsexual harassment by former vice president of marketing Anucha Browne Sanders;Thomas denies the charges. --Jan. 24

Feb. 28 (15-41)"You don't bring in players ... that can't play a style that is comfortablefor the coach." --Brown

Knicks havehighest payroll, worst record in NBA. --March 1

March 1 (15-42)"I believe in the plan, I believe in the strategy.... Maybe some peoplethink I'm brain dead...." --Dolan

March 11 (17-44)"[Bobcats G.M. and coach Bernie] Bickerstaff does a great job of instilling[confidence] in his players. He allows a lot of freedom." --Marbury

March 14 (17-45)"You want freedom? Now how are you going to have freedom with thosestats?" --Brown

March 15 (18-45)"I think it's personal now. I don't think it's about basketball ...."--Marbury

March 15 (18-45)"You're the best guard in the league, and the team's 17-45? Yeah, it's thecoach's fault." --Brown

March 29 (19-51)"That's worse." --Fred Klein, 71-year-old season-ticket holder,comparing the Knicks to his three hip replacements, ankle and shoulderoperations, triple bypass and two spinal fusions to The New York Times

April 2 (19-53)"Hell. Miserable. Pathetic. And sad." --Brown, asked to describe hisseason in 25 words or less

April 4 (19-54)"I played for the Clippers and we were bad. But I've never been aroundnothing like this."--Guard Quentin Richardson

April 4 (19-54)"Besides my mom passing away when I was 18, this is top three." --GuardSteve Francis, describing the worst experiences of his life

April 9 (22-54)"That I should've been a history teacher." --Brown, on what he learnedthis season

April 13 (22-56)"I don't care what [Brown] wants to hear.... I played like Stephon Marburythis year. And next year, I'm going to play like Starbury." --Marbury

"Believe me,this ain't going to be the same team [next year]." --Brown

Brown, sufferingfrom an acid reflux condition, leaves during a loss to the Cavaliers and spendsthe night in a Cleveland hospital. --April 13

April 14 (22-57)"I think that everybody would have to realize that the type of stress Larryhas had, which is not common to his career, has been trying on him." --JoeGlass, Brown's agent

Brown misses histhird straight game, but the team says it hopes he will return for the seasonfinale--amid speculation that he is plotting his exit strategy. --April 17

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''Over 80 percent of respondents said the Packersshould trade Favre." --TRYING THEIR PATIENCE, PAGE 30




JULY 2005



APRIL 2006