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NELLIE'S WORDS COME BACK TO HAUNT HIM IN KNICKS DEAL
Published January 10, 1997
The Knicks stopped paying fired coach Don Nelson in October after learning from Hornets ownership that he had made "some disparaging remarks" about then Knick Anthony Mason when Charlotte Coach Dave Cowens called seeking his opinion last summer, according to Jackie MacMullan in SPORTS ILLUSTRATED. The Knicks told Nelson that by making such comments he had violated his contract. When Nelson was fired after eight months on the job, they owed him $3.7M on a three-year, $5M deal. The two sides settled before the holidays, and Nelson's take is now $3.2M. Nelson: "I'm going to kill Cowens. That phone call cost me $500,000." Nelson said he is being sued by the Warriors, who hope to retrieve the $1M buyout they paid him when he resigned in '95. Nelson says Golden State is claiming he was no longer entitled to the money once hired by the Knicks (SI, 1/13).