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Knicks withheld Lin knee injury until after playoff ticket money was due

Apr 2, 2012, 10:54 AM EDT

Atlanta Hawks v New York Knicks Getty Images

Technically the decision to have surgery on his knee fell to Jeremy Lin himself — and he made it official when he decided Saturday to have the procedure that will keep him out six weeks, until the start of the playoffs (at best).

But everyone in the Knicks organization had known what the ultimate outcome of his injury would be — they had known he had a torn meniscus for days. They just wanted to sit on that information until after season ticket holders had paid all their playoff ticket money, reports Frank Isola at the New York Daily News.

As is the practice with all teams, people purchase a package for every playoff game through the NBA finals, then get their money returned when the team falls by the wayside. However, in the interim, teams make interest on the money sent them.

The Knicks used Lin to sell the playoff tickets knowing full well he might not be there to play, according to the report. However, the Knicks went even further to cover up the seriousness of Lin’s injury for a few days.

That was a crucial day inside the club’s executive offices at Two Penn Plaza because March 28 represented the deadline for season- ticket holders to purchase all four rounds of the playoffs.

In fact, in the email sent to subscribers, there is a picture of Lin leaping in celebration. Yet, it was two days before the deadline when Lin and the Knicks’ medical staff learned that the second-year point guard/cash cow was suffering from a torn meniscus in his left knee and that he wouldn’t be jumping for joy anytime soon….

On Friday in Atlanta, Woodson told reporters that he didn’t know “when” or “if” Lin would return to the lineup. Within one hour, the Knicks’ media relations staff released a statement to select media outlets contradicting Woodson.

Suddenly, the Knicks’ position was that there was a chance Lin could play either Tuesday in Indiana or Thursday in Orlando. In theory, they weren’t wrong. Lin had yet to decide whether to go ahead with surgery. However, Lin was leaning that way and the fact remains that the club had yet to announce the results of an MRI taken four days earlier. Lin’s knee wasn’t just sore. It is damaged.

The Knicks have left themselves plausible deniability here — they can say “Lin had not decided what to do yet.” But that’s clear they were trying to keep this out of the eye of the public as long as they could to protect their financial interests. Basically, they are saying they don’t trust their fans to be there for them if Lin isn’t. Kind of sad, they are back to their secretive ways. The team on the court may be better, but the Knicks are still the Knicks.

  1. stoutfiles - Apr 2, 2012 at 11:06 AM

    Oh please.

    Not only would the Knicks sellout regardless of who’s suiting up, anyone who bought tickets just for Lin can scalp them for a profit.

    • trbowman - Apr 2, 2012 at 8:02 PM

      If the Knicks were so confident they’d sellout regardless, then why would they withold the information?

    • rpb1234 - Apr 2, 2012 at 8:21 PM

      The sellout isn’t the issue. It is selling all 4 rounds of playoff tickets and holding the money. I doubt that people are lined up to buy all of the possible home games for ALL of the playoffs series when the Knicks will be lucky to get past rd 1.

  2. zblott - Apr 2, 2012 at 11:08 AM

    Karma is a bitch, and now the Knicks schedule becomes a bear and the Bucks schedule becomes a lamb, so the basketball gods may punch New York right in the wallet for yet another piece of deception intended to dupe fans.

    http://www.behindthebasket.com/btb/2012/4/1/behind-the-basket-power-rankings-24.html

    • Mr. Wright 212 - Apr 2, 2012 at 2:19 PM

      Will you limpwrists PLEASE stop whining about “karma”?

      Schedule means squat. Doesn’t mean the Bucks are going to be any more successful going down the stretch.

      • zblott - Apr 2, 2012 at 3:34 PM

        I see what you mean. Hard schedules and easy schedules are all the same. How do you feel about Boise St and other non-BCS football schools playing in the National Championship game every year?

    • rpb1234 - Apr 2, 2012 at 8:24 PM

      Dude, nothing to do with Karma. The Knicks had a light schedule in the beginning of the year AND they would have the SAME schedule regardless of the release of the Lin news

  3. hwatt - Apr 2, 2012 at 11:09 AM

    “… fans get their money returned when the team falls by the wayside. However, in the interim, teams make interest on the money sent them.”

    capitalism… the horror! let’s call congress and put a stop to these evil deeds!

  4. dysraw1 - Apr 2, 2012 at 11:25 AM

    lets just worry about getting in playoffs, boy talk about a waste.

  5. baron30 - Apr 2, 2012 at 11:35 AM

    i find it hard to believe that any of Knicks season ticket holders (who already have no probably paying the astronomical prices for seasons) are going to have an issue paying up for playoff tickets. This is New York Freaking City, demand and resources are not an issue. This is not like selling luxury boxes in Minny or court side VIP seats in Milwaukee. This is just a writer trying to sensationalize another reason for fans to dislike Dolan and crew. Jay-z and his Russian KGB probably conjured up this story.

  6. sunsation3413 - Apr 2, 2012 at 11:53 AM

    Any team would do the same thing. Its always a business first.

  7. jjordannba - Apr 2, 2012 at 12:21 PM

    SMART

  8. argumentation3321 - Apr 2, 2012 at 12:59 PM

    This action taken by the Knicks organization is a clear result of them utilizing Jeremy Lin as a media piece, rather than a piece of the offense. But does this report seem factual? Did they hold the news of Lin’s injury for ticket prices or possibly upcoming competitors on the schedule? Jeremy Lin has proved since Melo’s return that he is not a key part to the offense, certainly not anything Baron Davis could not fill in for. This is a personal attack toward the Knicks organization for purposes of foccusing more attention of “Linsanity”

  9. jumbossportsblog - Apr 2, 2012 at 3:54 PM

    Reblogged this on jumbossportsblog.

    • cltjump - Apr 2, 2012 at 4:05 PM

      No “and commented” this time? ^__^

  10. happster - Apr 2, 2012 at 9:20 PM

    What a dirtbag thing to do to your loyal fans and customers. Only in NY. I hope that each and every one if those who paid sue for fraud in the inducement and misrepresentatio. Oh, and throw in a consumer protection claim too. Gets you attorney’s fees and possible punitive damages.

    • bbk1000 - Apr 3, 2012 at 6:38 AM

      Only in NY?

      NY has more class than the rest of the country combined. Just look at the hillbillies in Kentucky and their classy celebration yesterday evening….On second thought, perhaps you’re right, only in NY riots don’t happen after a local team wins a championship, which is good, because we win so many.

  11. jolink653 - Apr 3, 2012 at 10:10 AM

    way to report one side of the story and not tell everyone else about the rest of it…according to MSG this was an extortion plot by mort zuckerman the owner of the daily news who wanted to combine newsday and the daily news to save money on printing and he promised that if msg cooperated and made the deal then the “bad press would stop” meaning the daily news would stop slanting the press against the knicks…because msg said no the daily news conveniently drops this story into the paper…ti don’t know how true this is but i’m not sure the knicks would withhold that kind of information about lin just because they wanted to sell tickets…they’ll sell out for the playoffs regardless

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