Joakim Noah developed a reputation as a party animal with the Knicks to the point where the team warned Frank Ntilikina to stay away.
Joakim Noah was only with the Knicks for two disappointing seasons, but there are so many layers to his story in New York. Another layer to the story was peeled back when Noah appeared on the ‘Chris Vernon Show’ in Memphis where he discussed how his partying derailed his career in New York:
“I can look back at it and say I was ready for New York City, but I wasn’t. Not just the pressure. I remember after the first game I had 60 people in my house. I’m too lit to play in New York City. Memphis is perfect for me.”
Noah’s admission isn’t the only thing that’s unsettling about this story. According to Stefan Bondy of the New York Daily News, Frank Ntilikina and other young players were told to avoid going out with Noah.
It makes sense why the Knicks had no interest in bringing Noah back to the team this year. There was some speculation that a coaching change could open the door for a Noah return.
But Noah’s reputation as a party animal made the breakup a certainty. The Knicks and head coach David Fizdale were in search of a culture change. The last thing they needed was Noah becoming a bad influence on the young guys.