Sunday, January 4, 2009

Now Stephon Marbury Wants to Play With Kevin Garnett

Sources have told that New York Knicks point guard Stephon Marbury is interested in joining the Boston Celtics if he is released from the Knicks.

If that happens, it would mean that Marbury would be reunited with Kevin Garnett. Garnett and Marbury played together in Minnesota and formed what looked to be a lethal tandem before the Timberwolves got the first taste of Marbury's "me-first" attitude and he forced them to trade him to the New Jersey Nets.

Marbury back then, wasn't happy sharing the spotlight with KG and wanted to run the T'Wolves. Minnesota wisely felt they were better off keeping Garnett, though he didn't reap them much success for a variety of reasons.

Now, as Marbury's career has gone from an All-Star player to an All-Star joke, he has begun to realise that time for winning a championship is running out and he wants to ride KG's coat tails to try to get his hands on an NBA title.

Marc Stein from ESPN has compiled a list of FAQ's which covers the likelihood of Marbury ending up in Boston, assuming he gets his buyout from Knicks General Manager Donnie Walsh.

Marbury refused to play for the Knicks this season even when they were down to seven healthy players and now he expects New York to immediately bow to his wishes and release him - with full pay - so he can join the red hot favourite to win the NBA crown.

Strange as it sounds, Marbury might actually be getting dumber and more selfish than ever.

Marbury's salary for this season is $21,937,500 which works out to $267,530.49 per game. The Knicks play game number 32 Sunday afternoon, ironically versus the Celtics. So, with 50 games remaining the Knicks still owe Steph $13,376,524.39 less the $400,000 that they fined him for refusing to play against the Detroit Pistons back on November 26.

The reason I'm bringing up these numbers is that Walsh might just have decided to pay Marbury out and let him sulk and miss the entire season. Let's hope so.

Marbury no longer deserves anything from New York, especially from Walsh and head coach Mike D'Antoni. Marbury was causing problems in the Big Apple long before those two turned up and in any case, he won't be there next season.

It isn't Walsh's money and even if he decides to release Marbury, any team that signs him will only pay him the absolute minimum, meaning that the Knicks are still on the hook for almost all of his salary still anyway.

No team is going to offer a decent trade for Marbury either. Earlier in the season, Walsh offered to release Marbury if he took $3 million less than his full $21 million. Marbury refused, saying that he'd only do it for $1 million.

Now, Marbury does have every right to expect to be paid the salary he signed up for. However, if he wants to be able to go and sign with whichever team he wants, then he should be prepared to give up a little something in return. 1/7th of his salary isn't too much to ask, but then again it seems that anything that is asked of Marbury is too much.

From a playing point of view, Marbury is still an NBA caliber point guard. He could easily start for several teams, although if he does join the Celtics, he would play back up to Rajon Rondo.

The whole situation has been a black eye for the Knicks, or maybe that should be a tattoo on the side of the Knicks head !

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