NBA reporter Marc Stein calls out Knicks fans for defending Leon Rose

What a fun offseason it’s been so far. Leon Rose sent out an email to season-ticket holders, New York Knicks executives (and Julius Randle) were in attendance for Game 1 of the Mavericks-Jazz series, and Rose has gotten criticized for his lack of communication.

We all expected New York to have a busy several months before the start of the 2022-23 season and the fun’s already started.

Before the email was sent, Rose was interviewed by MSG Network’s Mike Breen and it was aired ahead of the final game of the regular season. He addressed the two hottest topics – Julius Randle and Tom Thibodeau – but Rose was more than likely prepared for the conversation between him and Breen.

On Monday, two things happened that drew negative attention to Rose. Oklahoma City Thunder General Manager Sam Presti held his annual exit interview with the media that lasted for over two hours, and NBA reporter Marc Stein blasted Knicks fans for their treatment of Randle in contrast to Rose.

Marc Stein is baffled by New York Knicks fans’ treatment of Leon Rose.

Stein and New York Daily News’ Stefan Bondy went on Stein Line Live on Monday afternoon to discuss the NBA playoffs and the Knicks.

Stein, who formerly worked for ESPN and The New York Times, went on an interesting rant about New York fans’ treatment of Randle and Rose. On the topic of Rose not directly addressing the public, Stein said:

“I got so much pushback and so many Knicks fans are telling me that we’re the only ones who care about this and it’s only the media who wants to hear from Leon. Knicks fans don’t care. I can’t believe that they’re defending Leon’s silence and complete lack of visibility, but just riding Randle. Yes, he had a down season, but the season before he made All-NBA, made the biggest jump in 3-point shooting that we’ve probably ever seen. I just think that should’ve earned him more of a grace period.”

To be fair, there doesn’t seem to be an influx of fans who have spent their time coming to Rose’s defense, but that doesn’t mean that those types of fans don’t exist.

Stein brought up a point that’s worth exploring and it’s how Randle’s been treated by his fanbase.

This isn’t to say that the former All-Star isn’t blameless because he needs to be held accountable for his lackluster actions, just like Rose needs to be held accountable, but he still finished the season averaging 20.1 points, 9.9 rebounds, and 5.1 assists in 71 games.

At times, Randle’s actions this past year mirrored those of James Harden in his final days in Brooklyn. With that being said, if he isn’t all in with the direction that the Knicks should be headed in (ie: RJ Barrett and the young core), then he should no longer be in New York.

Rose’s arrival to the Knicks organization brought a lot of hope, and for good reason, but he owes it to the fanbase to be more open.

That doesn’t involve detailing all of New York’s plans, but sitting down in front of the media at the end of the year (at the very least) should be the standard. And as for Randle, something needs to change on his end if he’s still with the Knicks next season.