NEW YORK (CBSNewYork/AP) — Knicks owner James Dolan has banned Charles Oakley from Madison Square Garden.
The decision comes two days after Oakley clashed with security staff at a Knicks game.READ MORE: New Surveillance Video Shows Suspect Who Allegedly Shot Teen Getting On City Bus In Harlem
Dolan said “hopefully [the ban] won’t be forever.”
The announcement comes after Madison Square Garden reportedly fired its security chief.
Frank Benedetto, the senior vice president for security for the Madison Square Garden Co., was fired Friday, CBS2’s Otis Livingston reported. MSG chairman James Dolan might also take futher action against other employees involved in the incident that resulted in Oakley, a former Knicks All-Star, being forcibly removed from the arena and arrested.
A Madison Square Garden spokesman told DNAInfo that the company does not comment on employees that no longer work there.
On video posted to social media, Oakley appeared to shove security guards before they pulled him away from his seat behind the baseline during the first quarter of the Knicks’ game against the Los Angeles Clippers.
Sources say the former fan favorite refused to leave, and instead hit one employee in the face with a closed fist, causing swelling to the face.READ MORE: NYPD: 85-Year-Old Man Attacked & Robbed Outside Bronx Home
Two other employees received minor cuts to their hands while attempting to remove Oakley, according to sources. All three victims refused medical attention.
Oakley was handcuffed near an arena exit as he waited for police to arrive. He was charged with three counts of assault and trespassing.
The Knicks say Oakley was kicked out for “abusive behavior.” Sources told CBS2 the altercation with security followed comments Oakley made to Dolan, with whom he has an icy relationship.
Oakley, however, insists he said nothing to Dolan. The former power forward also has alleged that MSG security has been known to follow him around at games.
Following the news of his ban, Oakley tweeted that he will be holding a press conference next week.
Benedetto was hired by MSG after serving as a top U.S. Secret Service official under presidents George W. Bush and Barack Obama.
Oakley played for the Knicks from 1988 until 1998, helping them reach the 1994 NBA Finals alongside Patrick Ewing, John Starks, the late Anthony Mason and head coach Pat Riley. But he has a poor relationship with the team because of his criticisms of Dolan, the Madison Square Garden chairman.MORE NEWS: Mayor De Blasio Announces Vaccine Mandate For All New York City Municipal Workers, Including First Responders
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