10 Biggest offseason blunders in New York Knicks history

New York Knicks, Stephon Marbury, Eddy Curry (Photo by Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images)
New York Knicks, Stephon Marbury, Eddy Curry (Photo by Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images) /
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New York Knicks
Isiah Thomas, New York Knicks. (Photo by Al Bello/Getty Images) /

5. Isiah Thomas signs Jerome James to a 5-year deal worth $30 million

Isiah Thomas was a Hall of Fame point guard and one of the 75 greatest players in NBA history, but during his tenure running the Knicks, he was known for his terrible basketball decisions (subscription required) and an awful harassment lawsuit that found Thomas liable for being part of the toxic environment. New York had the league’s highest payroll during his five years in charge but made the playoffs just once and won just 151 games.

Thomas is responsible for some of the biggest blunders in franchise history, and his hiring as president of basketball operations may have landed him number one on this list if it was done during the offseason. The Knicks were 28 games into the regular season in 2003-04 when Zeke was brought on board.

Thomas was 18 months into his tenure when he signed Jerome James to a five-year deal for the mid-level exception. The problem was the seven-foot big man had averaged 4.9 points, 3.5 rebounds, and 1.3 blocks in 15.2 minutes per game to that point in his career. James had a monster playoff series to help the Sonics defeat the Kings in 2005, and that was enough for Thomas to hand out a massive contract.

James was already 30 years old, and he played a total of 90 games over the five-year deal. The seven-footer averaged 7.7 minutes per game over those contests in what turned out to be one of the worst free-agent signings in franchise history.