NEW YORK— Madison Square Garden chairman James Dolan says Cleveland native Charles Oakley has been banned from the arena, though not necessarily forever.
In an interview Friday with ESPN Radio’s Michael Kay, Dolan also confirms a report that he had fired the Garden’s security chief, two nights after Oakley was forcefully removed from his seat and arrested at a Knicks game. Dolan says the firing of the security head stemmed from more than just the handling of the Oakley incident.
Dolan says that games must remain safe for fans, and for that reason, “We are going to put the ban in place and hopefully it won’t be forever.”
The Knicks distributed a witness report earlier Friday featuring more than a dozen witnesses from throughout the arena who described what the Knicks have called Oakley’s “abusive” behavior.
Friday night, Oakley tweeted a message to his supporters:
I want thank all in players and pass NBA players as well as family and friends for all your love and support
— Charles Oakley (@CharlesOakley34) February 11, 2017
Last fall, the street in front of John Hay High School in Cleveland was renamed in Oakley’s honor. He attended the Cleveland high school before playing college basketball at Virginia Union University.