NEW YORK (AP) - Al Sharpton and his National Action Network backed off their threats of protests at Madison Square Garden on Saturday, satisfied with Isiah Thomas' stance on derogatory language toward women.
A taped deposition shown at a sexual harassment trial against Thomas and MSG appeared to show the Knicks coach saying he felt it was OK for a black man, but not a white one, to call a black woman ``bitch.''
But Thomas has stressed that the tape didn't properly portray his feelings that it was unacceptable for any man to use that language, only that it was worse if it came from a white man because of the racial overtones involved.
Thomas' wife, Lynn, met with Sharpton and Tamika Mallory, the national director of the Decency Initiative, on Friday night, bringing along a longer portion of the deposition than the approximately 11 minutes that were shown at the trial.
``Clearly in this tape, he said it was unacceptable, he said it was inappropriate, and he did not support it,'' Sharpton said. ``That was not what was shown on television.''
Lynn Thomas also made a rare public statement Saturday at the press conference, saying she felt it was ``imperative in this issue to make a stand.''
``I know my husband never said those things,'' she said. ``If he spoke like that I would not be with him.''
The Knicks play Minnesota on Sunday night in their home opener, and Mallory said there were plans for what would have been a ``substantial protest.''

Top NBA Public Bets

NBA Top Stories

Thumbnail OKC takes on surging Los Angeles group It’s official: Russell Westbrook is just the third player in NBA history to post at least 20 triple-doubles in a season. But will the multifaceted guard lift...
Thumbnail Jazz vs. Suns Prediction Are the Utah Jazz a good bet to cover tonight as a road favorite versus the Phoenix Suns at 9:00PM ET?
Thumbnail Hornets vs. Celtics Prediction The Celtics are 5-point home favorites versus the Hornets on Monday night - will Boston cover when the teams tip-off at 7:30PM ET?
Thumbnail Hawks vs. Knicks Prediction The Knicks are a small home underdog versus the Hawks today at 1:00PM ET. Will New York cover the spread?
Thumbnail Hosts seek redemption after holiday collapse Despite the best efforts of Kevin Durant, Golden State suffered a gut-wrenching loss to Cleveland on Christmas. But is tonight’s rematch bound to produce...

NBA Team Pages