A 70-year-old lifelong Jewish New York Knicks fan hit back at team owner James Dolan after the mercurial boss slammed him as an “alchoholic” and a “hateful mess.”
Irving Bierman, who has been a fan of the team for six decades, said Dolan is a disgrace for making excuses about the sorry state of the once proud basketball franchise.
“I wanted to throw up. The words he was using, I couldn’t believe it,” Bierman told the Wall Street Journal. “What he wrote in his email had nothing to do with what I mentioned in my email. Like one is tangerines and the other is matzo balls. I mean, it’s ridiculous.”
Joan Bierman, Irving’s wife, had even more choice words for the Knicks boss.
“Mr. Dolan is one sick puppy,” she said on her Facebook page.
The email spat started when Bierman had the temerity to criticize Dolan’s stewardship of the team, which has a pitiful 10-41 record this season.
Bierman sent Dolan an email with the subject line “I have been a knicks fan since 1952.”
“As a knicks fan for in excess of 60 years, I am utterly embarrassed by your dealings with the Knicks,” Bierman wrote. “Sell them so their fans can at least look forward to growing them in a positive direction.”
Bierman mentioned Dolan’s ill-fated hiring of ex-team president Isiah Thomas, one of a number of bungled decisions that have made the team a hoops laughing stock despite a sky-high payroll.
Dolan lashed back at the fan, making a raft of unfounded and outrageous accusations.
“I’ll bet your life is a mess and you are a hateful mess,” Dolan seethed in an email response. “What have you done that anyone would consider positive or nice. I am betting nothing.”
The exchange was reported by the sports web site Deadspin.com, which obtained the email exchange from Bierman’s filmmaker son, Aaron Bierman. Red-faced Knicks officials admitted the shameful email from their boss was authentic.
Amazing that the #nba has done nothing to suspend #jamesdolan especially with the #NBAAllStarNYC coming up. pic.twitter.com/3xcL5fOuM1— Albert Gattullo (@algattullo) February 9, 2015
Dolan, who has guided the Knicks to mediocrity and worse during 15 years at the helm of Madison Square Garden, called Bierman an “alcoholic” and suggested that his own family would rather not have him around.
He even went further by instructing Bierman to abandon his beloved team for their less-popular crosstown rivals, the Brooklyn Nets.
“Start rooting for the Nets because the Knicks don’t want you,” Dolan said.
Aaron Bierman, said his dad hoped the Knicks boss might concede some of the shortcomings that have made him a lightning rod for criticism among fans.
“We thought maybe [Dolan] would admit he made some mistakes,” Aaron Bierman told ESPN. “Instead, he confirmed some of the worst things that fans think of him.”