Former New York Knicks forward Charles Oakley lost in court, as his civil suit against James Dolan was dismissed. Is reconciliation possible?
Reportedly, Oakley had originally sued Knicks’ owner James Dolan and MSG for defamation, assault and false imprisonment, amongst other charges.
In a written statement, Judge Richard Sullivan seemed to acknowledge the media circus surrounding this case and the growing tension between the Knicks’ fanbase and the owner of the team.
“But while basketball fans in general, and Knicks fans in particular, are free to form their own opinions about who was in the right and whether Oakley’s ejection was motivated by something more than the whims of the teams owner, the fact remains that Oakley has failed to allege a plausible legal claim that can meet federal pleading standards.”
Sullivan also appeared to question the grounds for the lawsuit in the first place.
“Oakley grossly misunderstands the law concerning a landlord’s right to remove a trespasser from its property. The law is clear that the MSG defendants had the right to expel Oakley from the Garden and that his refusal to leave justified their use of reasonable force to remove him.”
As it stands, the relationship between Oakley, Dolan and Madison Square Garden still needs a ton of fixing. The Knicks, in a press release, thanked the court for its ruling and used the word “peace” as it relates to moving forward with the Oak Man.
“We thank the court for its ruling. This was an incident that no one was happy about. Maybe now there can be peace between us.”
Marc Berman of the New York Post also reported Knicks branding consultant Steve Stoute has charged himself with mending the fences between both parties when he made the following statement on ESPN’s Frist Take.
“My job today is to fix up and clean up some of the things of the past that were wrong,” Stoute proclaimed.
Be that as it may, the divide may be too great. Oakley’s legal team plans to file an appeal to challenge the ruling. As a result, this may just be the second act of a long-standing feud. Hopefully, the opposite is true, as Oakley still holds a strong tie to an era where the Knicks were respected on the basketball court.
Only time will tell when that will happen again.