It seems absurd to connect the NBA with the Dadaist movement in art, yet that's the only thought that came to mind upon reading Stephon Marbury's plans to start working out at his old high school. The Lincoln High Railsplitters, who also sprung Sebastien Telfair and (fictionally) Jesus Shuttlesworth, could be sharing the court with Starbury, the latest turn in a saga that gets stranger by the minute.
"I think I'm going to start practicing with my high school team," Marbury said. "Seriously. I've already called the coach to see if I can run up and down with the guys and at the same time help teach the younger guys the NBA game."
Anyway, Dadaism used irrational, anarchic images to reject widely held thoughts about aesthetics in art. In short, if art was supposed to be appealing, Dada was supposed to be the opposite. D'Antoni, by playing Chris Duhon, Anthony Roberson and Mardy Collins over Marbury, is doing something similar. Losing games, or nearly losing games, you could win by playing Marbury is part of a larger statement that has nothing to do with a logical, reasonable approach to basketball.
He couldn't have found a better co-conspirator than Marbury. He hasn't trod on the planes of rational thought at any point in recent history, and, frankly, his cool as a cucumber veneer through this all defies any preconceived notion anyone had about Starbury's ability to fade into the background. Going back to high school is just the latest zig when everyone was anticipating a zag.
Marbury made his comments after Mike D'Antoni's exile extended to a scrimmage at the team's practice facility on Thursday. While Marbury publicly espoused his comfort with that decision, saying the guys who played in games needed the practice more, his high school hoop dreams may be a sign that his shunning is starting to affect him. That's gotta be the Knicks' hope. If Marbury should back down and accept a negotiated buyout for less than the $21.9 million owed him, the team would likely pounce on the opportunity.
Unless, of course, Marbury was just having some fun. In which case, the most interesting thing about the Knicks will continue to be the sideshow.
UPDATE: Welcome back, my friends, to the show that never ends. The Knicks have barred Marbury from working out with the Railsplitters, purportedly because he'd be putting himself at risk of injury in violation of his contract. Why the team cares about Marbury's physical state is hard to figure, sitting on one's rear doesn't require being in playing shape, but nothing about this makes any sense.