The New York Post’s Pat Reichart on the story that won’t die.
Michael Ray Richardson, who was suspended by the CBA’s Albany Patroons and did not have his contract with the team renewed last Wednesday following a series of insensitive remarks in the Times Union of Albany, is firing back. The former Knick and Net will file a $5 million lawsuit for libel, slander, and defamation against reporter Brian Ettikin and the Hearst Corporations (which owns the Times Union) later this week.
Ettikin quoted Richardson saying, “I’ve got big-time lawyers. I’ve got big-time Jew lawyers.” He later said that Jewish people were “crafty.” Richardson allegedly made the comments prior to the team’s playoff game on March 27. The Times Union has an audio copy of the comments, which it is refusing to release publicly.
During that game, Richardson ran into more hot water when he cursed at a group of fans. His remarks included a gay slur.
“Micheal recalls saying ‘Jewish lawyer,’ not ‘Jew,’ ” his lawyer, John Aretakis, told The Post.
The crux of the lawsuit, however, is Richardson’s allegation that Ettikin was simply seeking revenge on the Patroons following a 2005 incident that resulted in the reporter’s car being towed.
That, claims Aretakis, proves malice, which, in his words, “means they have it in for you.”
According to Dianne Coyne, whose husband, Jim, is the general manager of the Patroons, Ettikin parked his car in an illegal space around 5 p.m. on the date of the incident. She claims that Ettikin asked her if he could park his car there, and she responded, “You’re OK right now, but I can’t guarantee for the entire night. You know you’re in a ‘No Parking.’ “