It was possibly the most mismatched coaching hire in sports history. Larry Brown was a Hall of Famer and very, very old school, and he'd just led his current team to its second consecutive Finals appearance (his third Finals appearance in five years). Of course he'd left that Detroit Pistons team acrimoniously, as Brown has tended to do always done throughout his career. What's a good landing spot for a cranky coach who'd spent the previous two years guiding a squad of pro's pros veterans like Rip Hamilton, Ben Wallace, and Chauncey Billups? The most dysfunctional team in the L, featuring such team-first exemplars as Stephon Marbury (who Brown had already beefed with at the previous summer's Olympics), Jerome James, and Eddy Curry. Not surprisingly, it resulted in a then franchise-worst 23-59 record (which, amazingly, featured a six-game winning streak—to go with two five-game, two six-game, one seven-game, one nine-game, and one ten-game losing skids) and the "hiring" of Isiah Thomas to right the ship. You know it's a bad year when they hire Isiah Thomas to right the ship. Not that Brown cared too much. He'd signed a 5-year $50+ million dollar deal with the Knicks, and walked away with an undisclosed (albeit likely sizable) chunk of that cash when he was fired.