Monday, January 16, 2012
Ewing: Won't be easy for Nets in Brooklyn
By Ian Begley
Patrick Ewing thinks the Nets will have a tough time gaining a fan base in Brooklyn.
He believes most fans in New York root for the Knicks and will not switch allegiances to Mikhail Prokhorov & Co.
"Most of the fans will still be Knick fans," Ewing said when asked about the viability of Brooklyn as a basketball a pro basketball market. "Brooklyn, it's a great town, a great city. It's New York. But most of the people, just like most of the people who were going to Nets games [when Ewing played in New York] were Knicks fans, so they're going to have their work cut out for them to try to change the culture."
The Nets will move to Brooklyn and a brand new arena beginning in 2012-2013.
EWING LIKES TYSON: Ewing is a fan of new Knicks center Tyson Chandler. But he said it's too early to compare the Knicks' trio of Chandler, Carmelo Anthony and Amare Stoudemire to that of he, Anthony Mason and Charles Oakley.
"We won a lot of games," Ewing said with a smile. "They just started, who knows? Definitely, Carmelo and Stoudemire are two great All Stars and Tyson … is a plus; he brings energy and effort."
As for his own big man, Ewing hopes potential free agent Dwight Howard stays in Orlando.
"My opinion, he's the best center in the league right now," Ewing said. "He's great for our team."
The Hall of Famer acknowledged that all of the drama surrounding Howard has been a burden for Orlando.
"It's tough for everybody," Ewing said. "It's tough for the team; it's tough for his teammates; it's tough for management because naturally they want him to be around, want him to be a part of the organization."
EWING FOR HIRE: Ewing, an assistant with the Magic, still has aspirations of becoming a head coach. He interviewed with the Detroit Pistons in the offseason. Detroit ultimately decided to hire ex-Nets coach Lawrence Frank.
"It was great to finally have my first interview. I thought i did a pretty good job," Ewing said. "Like anything, it's a learning experience and the next one I hope to be better ."
You can follow Ian Begley on Twitter.