NEW YORK (AP) -The New York Knicks rewarded fans who stuck it out until the end of a miserable season with a feast.
The Knicks gave away free food and nonalcoholic beverages during their season finale against the Boston Celtics on Monday night, their way of thanking the fans who helped them sell out more than half of their home games.
Madison Square Garden announced its 21st sellout in 41 home games, even though the Knicks came into the game with a 23-57 record. The building played to 96 percent capacity for the season.
Howard Jacobs, senior vice president of marketing for MSG's sports teams, said the giveaway was ``just to say thank you for their passion all season along.''
The Garden began giving the food away an hour before the 7:30 p.m. game, with additional concession staff hired to bring food around the arena so fans wouldn't have to wait on lines.
Madison Square Garden officials wouldn't comment on what their expense would be. A jumbo hot dog costs $5, a bottle of water $4.25 and a box of Cracker Jacks goes for $5.
``We've got nearly 20,000 people here tonight and there's going to be a cost involved, but it's a cost we're willing to bear,'' Jacobs said. ``We think it's appropriate to thank our fans for a lot of loyalty they've shown us this year.''

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