For 28 years, Spike Lee claims that he has entered the same door at Madison Square Garden to watch his beloved New York Knicks play basketball, and until this week, it was never a problem.
Lee, a Morehouse graduate and recent Academy Award-winning filmmaker, was confronted upon entering the Garden Tuesday, March 3, 2020, as he looked to take his normal stroll through the building toward his courtside seat. Instead, he found himself embroiled in a tug-of-war with MSG security, who ordered him to walk out of the building and re-enter through another door.
Lee appeared on “First Take” subsequent to the incident gaining national attention, insisting he was treated unfairly and admitting to engaging in a shouting match that was caught on camera.
“They never said when the thing changed, so why not call me?” Lee asked, indicating the security officers never considered that there was little to no communication between Lee and the Knicks brass. “When my deposit’s due, this astronomical price for Knicks tickets and I’m one day late, my phone is ringing off the hook.”
Lee reportedly pays more than $3,000 per game and upwards of $300,000 per year for his seats. He and Max Kellerman did some quick math on the set, estimating he’s paid somewhere in the neighborhood of $10 million during the three decades he’s supported the Knicks.
“I’m done for the season. I’m done,” Lee said to the surprise of everyone on the set.
“I’m being harassed by James Dolan, and I don’t know why,” he continued.
The Knicks released an official statement refuting Lee’s claims.
“The idea that Spike Lee is a victim because we have repeatedly asked him to not use our employee entrance and instead use a dedicated VIP entrance — which is used by every other celebrity who enters The Garden — is laughable,” the statement read.
“It’s disappointing that Spike would create this false controversy to perpetuate drama. He is welcome to come to The Garden anytime via the VIP or general entrance, just not through our employee entrance, which is what he and Jim agreed to last night when they shook hands.”
Click through to see Lee vow he will not attend another Knicks’ game this season.