The uncoachable talent is now a grumpy head coach. Micheal Ray Richardson, the breakaway id, is not at all pleased with this lack of discipline he is witnessing in his first week on the job. He repeatedly halts open tryouts for the Albany Patroons at a local gym, frustrated that these professional wannabes can’t manage to run a simple, five-man weave.
“I won’t have to cut you. You’re going to cut yourselves,” Richardson scolds this group. “Everybody wants to outjump and outrun everybody. Everybody thinks they’re gonna be in the NBA.”
The irony of this scene seems lost on Richardson, though the mischievous smile is still lurking, poised for the next playful moment. Two decades ago, Richardson would drive coaches like Hubie Brown and Stan Albeck practically insane, just like this, and now he is telling these guys to stop the nonsense.
“I was a coachable guy,” insists the player known forever around here as Sugar. “People say Larry Brown is tough on his point guards, but he was the easiest coach to play for, if you played the game right. As long as you’ve giving me 100%, I got no problems.”
The young Patroons who will be playing for Richardson, when the season opens in November, have never seen Sugar play and they say they’ve never heard the quote, circa 1982 with the Knicks, “The ship be sinkin’.”