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Old 11-01-2008, 06:49 AM   #1
Tarkus
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Default Marbury working hard...

on building a healthy relationship with his new coach....

excerpt:

Knicks place Marbury on inactive list

PHILADELPHIA (AP) - New York Knicks guard Stephon Marbury was placed on the inactive list before Friday night's 116-87 loss to the Philadelphia 76ers.

Marbury, a former All-Star reportedly scheduled to earn $21.9 million this season, did not play in the Knicks' 120-115 season-opening win over the Miami Heat on Wednesday.

Knicks coach Mike D'Antoni and Marbury met Friday and Marbury asked the coach if he was going to play. When told he would not be seeing action, Marbury reportedly requested he be put on the inactive list and D'Antoni and the guard mutually agreed to take that action for Friday's game.

"This is the direction we're going and there will be some nights like this," D'Antoni said of Marbury after the loss. "If I was playing everything for tonight, you'd do things differently. But we're trying to build a base for going forward."

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& D'Antoni is going to have the rabid NY fans on his ass real soon, if not already:

excerpt

D'Antoni curses Garden chant for Marbury

Mike D'Antoni had no time to enjoy his first victory as Knicks coach, because he was on the defensive Thursday after TV cameras caught him in a cursing fit while fans were chanting for banished Stephon Marbury to be put into the game.

With some in the Garden crowd surprisingly chanting "We Want Steph" with 11:10 remaining in the fourth (others booed the chant), a stewing D'Antoni was caught on MSG Network cameras Wednesday in a tirade, mouthing:

"You've got to be (bleeping) kidding me. You've got to be (bleeping) kidding me. What a bunch of (bleeps)."

Yesterday after practice, D'Antoni acknowledged his frustration with the Marbury chanters, showing how strongly he believes the lightning-rod point guard does not belong on the court. Marbury received a DNP, his second of his career, and is out of the rotation indefinitely despite likely being the team's most skilled player.

"Sometimes I don't think the fans quite get it," D'Antoni said. "It's like who you draft. They're going to boo. When you make a big decision, someone's going to like it, someone's not. You'll hear from the people who don't.

"Did I look exasperated?" D'Antoni added. "I was into the game. You get so much adrenaline at that point and you react. I'm into the game, into the moment. Sometimes I can be better than that. I'll make mistakes. I'll do better."...

Ten minutes after D'Antoni said he was riled by the Marbury chants, a Knicks public relations official brought back the coach to reporters, where he then denied the curses were directed toward fans.

"There's no way I'd do that to the fans," he said. "It was a great opening night. That's what should be the story."

Unfortunately for D'Antoni, the story is also about Marbury, whose days are numbered following the coach's bold decision to take him out of the rotation after playing him 20 minutes per game during preseason.

A logical conclusion to this roaring controversy is president Donnie Walsh waiving Marbury. Walsh may have held him hostage so he would agree to take less than the $21.9 million he is owed. Marbury has told The Post he would want "every penny." Marbury currently has no agent.

Walsh said it's too early for buyout talk, but he didn't rule out that scenario....

Though D'Antoni didn't want Marbury with the team at the outset and Walsh convinced him, Wednesday's benching came as a shock.

D'Antoni never hinted during the preseason that Marbury's spot in the rotation was in jeopardy and praised his performances. D'Antoni didn't give advance warning to Marbury, letting him suffer the humiliation before his hometown crowd.

D'Antoni could have known all along Marbury would not be in the rotation, but deceived him during preseason so he wouldn't create a major distraction.

D'Antoni denies this and says Mardy Collins' solid preseason convinced D'Antoni to bench Marbury. D'Antoni said he felt Collins is better suited to handle a minor role than Marbury, who has been a malcontent in the past. D'Antoni said all players had a clean slate, but apparently it did not apply to Marbury....

"It'd be rubbing his face in it (if I said), go in for three minutes, then come out," D'Antoni said. "He's a better player than that. Either there's a big-time role for him or there isn't. That's what I was wrestling with the whole preseason."

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Regardless, I'm behind D'Antoni on this...
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