For fifteen years, Patrick Ewing was a pillar for the New York Knicks. Although he could not bring a championship back to the Big Apple and Madison Square Garden, he remains a source of pride for the city. Ewing is considered one of the top ten greatest centers in NBA history, made 11 All-Star appearances during his tenure in the league, and is seen by most pundits as the greatest player to ever don a Knickerbocker jersey.
Now, as the head coach of the Georgetown Hoyas men’s basketball team, Ewing is back at MSG to lead his college players through the Big East tournament. But apparently, the current security team at “The Mecca of Basketball” considers no one above protocol – not even “Big Pat” – and all his accomplishments and celebrated moments were not enough for them to let the 7-foot tall legend roam around and not to ask him for ID.
“I thought this was my building,” Ewing recounted yesterday at a postgame conference after his Hoyas pulled off an exciting 72-71 win against the Villanova Wildcats. “And I feel terrible that I’m getting stopped, accosted, [people] asking for passes. “Everybody in this building should know who the hell I am, and I’m getting stopped — I can’t move around this building. I was like, ‘What the hell? Is this Madison Square Garden?’” And maybe the present crop of security is too many years removed from Ewing’s heyday to remember who he is.
While it wasn’t clear if “Big Pat” was joking, his statement did have shades of previous beefs between Ewing’s former teammate Charles Oakley and Knicks owner James Dolan. Oakley and Dolan’s relationship has been contentious enough to culminate in Oakley being escorted from Madison Square Garden in a 2017 kerfuffle and even result in a court mediation about the matter.
But from MSG Entertainment’s point of view, it’s all been a misunderstanding between staff and Ewing. The organization released a statement to the press later Thursday afternoon: “[James Dolan] and Patrick have a long-standing relationship; they spoke this afternoon and reaffirmed that. We all know, respect, and appreciate what he means to The Garden and New York. Good luck to him and his Hoyas in the Big East semi-finals.” Ewing’s Hoyas face off against the Seton Hall Pirates. Hopefully, for him, they won’t be as successful in stopping him, too.
Of course, Twitter was just as shocked and angry as Ewing. Check out some of the reactions below.
Twitter Reacts To Patrick Ewing Needing Proper ID In The Halls Of MSG
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Patrick Ewing trying to get pass security pic.twitter.com/Li2t1oJetq— Travonne Edwards (Blk Tray) (@Travonne) March 12, 2021
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If you work at MADISON SQUARE GARDEN in NEW YORK and have zero clue who Patrick Ewing is (with a whole retired jersey in the rafters), then you don't need to be working security at MSG. https://t.co/Z8dT4wSlJ9— Jeff (@JeffJSays) March 12, 2021
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When Patrick Ewing and Charles Oakley see MSG security pic.twitter.com/9Fi2pZOXPw— Josiah Johnson (@KingJosiah54) March 11, 2021
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I don’t blame Patrick Ewing for being pissed about getting stopped multiple times by security at Madison Square Garden. In MSG personnel’s defense, however, he was difficult to recognize without Michael Jordan dunking over him. pic.twitter.com/i3yInNgVe0— Super 70s Sports (@Super70sSports) March 11, 2021
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You: WHO IS STOPPING PATRICK EWING?! I WANT NAMES!!!— Jen Lada (@JenLada) March 11, 2021
Me: <whispers> Olajuwon.
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Patrick Ewing after his Georgetown Hoyas took down top-seeded Villanova at MSG:— Knicks Videos (@sny_knicks) March 11, 2021
"This is my house"pic.twitter.com/Rsy86zyOor
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How. In the hell. Does security at M S Effing G not know who Patrick Ewing is?— mike freeman (@mikefreemanNFL) March 11, 2021
He’s 9 feet tall. Does racism cause blindness? https://t.co/PPbdEdKZGa
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I don't think yall realize how crazy Patrick Ewing getting pressed for a visitors pass in MSG is LOL— Jason Maples (@JJMaples55_MST) March 12, 2021
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Patrick Ewing saying “this is my house” after Georgetown’s upset of Villanova at MSG is everything.— Hannah Withiam (@HannahWithiam) March 11, 2021
Knicks Legend Patrick Ewing Doesn’t Take Kindly to Being Stopped by MSG Security was originally published on cassiuslife.com