Following Georgetown’s 72-71 win over Villanova in the Big East Tournament on Thursday, Hoyas head coach Patrick Ewing made a comment about Madison Square Garden being his “house.” While it seemed like fun coach banter during an interview, it turned out there was some added context here that made Ewing feel like he had to say something.
Ewing, who of course plied his trade at the Garden during his time as a member of the New York Knicks, said after the game that he kept getting stopped by arena security who wanted to see his credentials. It seemed absurd that security at Madison Square Garden, of all places, would not recognize Patrick Ewing, but this is apparently a thing, and James Dolan spoke to Ewing in the aftermath.
Madison Square Garden Entertainment issues a statement saying Knicks owner James Dolan and Knicks legend Patrick Ewing spoke today after Ewing said he had difficulties today with MSG security during the Big East tournament: pic.twitter.com/e3ZJckyS36
— Marc Stein (@TheSteinLine) March 11, 2021
One person, unsurprisingly, finds this all baffling. Spike Lee went onto ESPN’s First Take and compared Ewing getting stopped at the Garden to another New York legend being stopped in their old stomping ground.
Spike Lee rips MSG for disrespecting Patrick Ewing. pic.twitter.com/WD9xV2gpH2
— First Take (@FirstTake) March 12, 2021
“I’m not blaming this on Dolan, but there has to be something just wrong at Madison Square Garden,” Lee said. “Can any of you imagine Derek Jeter being stopped entering Yankee Stadium? Magic Johnson being stopped entering the Staples Center? Michael Jordan — the GOAT, don’t hate — Michael Jordan being stopped entering the United Center? WTF?”
Lee went onto say that he called Ewing, who was “hot” over the entire situation. Lee, of course, had his own run-in with Madison Square Garden security in the recent past, as he was not allowed to enter the Garden in early 2020 through his normal entrance, which led to a butting of heads between himself and the franchise.