Spike Lee slams Knicks’ statement on lack of comment on George Floyd
The New York Knicks have been under scrutiny this week over a lack of any public comment amid the ongoing fallout from George Floyd’s death last week while in Minneapolis police custody, and Spike Lee unsurprisingly is unimpressed with the organization’s explanation for it.
The esteemed director, perhaps the most recognizable Knicks fan due to his constant presence at Madison Square Garden over the years, provided a terse, two-word statement in reaction to how the team defended its silence amid the protests that have occurred across the United States in the wake of Floyd’s death last week.
NEW: Spike Lee, in a text message, says “Not Surprised” in response to this Dolan email. https://t.co/ulYHf8qHjh— Sopan Deb (@SopanDeb) June 2, 2020
As shared above in the tweet from Sopan Deb of The New York Times, an email from Knicks owner James Dolan to MSG employees obtained by the media questioned the organization’s responsibility to weigh in on such issues.
“As companies in the business of sports and entertainment, however, we are not any more qualified than anyone else to offer our opinion on social matters,” the email read.
Numerous NBA teams, not to mention organizations across the landscape of professional sports, have issued statements reacting to the continued protests sparked by Floyd’s death. Players of course have been passionately weighing in as well.
As Pablo Torre of ESPN reported — as also shared in the above tweet — Knicks staff and players are “furious” over the decision to decline to make a public statement regarding Floyd’s death and ensuing fallout.
Lee’s reaction to the Knicks’ handling of the situation was predictable. Not only did he release a short film on Sunday in reaction to Floyd’s death, Lee’s relationship with the Knicks has completely deteriorated in recent months.
An incident occurred at Madison Square Garden earlier this year during which Lee claimed he was “harassed” by arena security while entering through a gate he has used for years and was later escorted from his courtside seat. Lee has since sworn off the Knicks and tabbed them as the “laughingstock” of the NBA.