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May 25, 2019

The fan who James Dolan tried to boot from music festival over ‘Sell the (Knicks)’ sign opens up to the News

March 14, 2019

A longtime Knicks fan told the Daily News that James Dolan asked him to leave his band’s concert a few years ago after he held up a sign telling the sensitive billionaire to “Quit your day job. Sell the Knicks.”

Kevin DiStasio posted video of the incident showing Dolan interrupt his performance at a sparsely-attended concert to lecture DiStasio and urge him to bounce.

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However, unlike the fan that was booted and banned at the Garden for telling Dolan to sell the Knicks on Sunday, the owner had no power over security at the music festival in Tennessee. He was just one of the lesser-known opening acts. So DiStasio said he stayed for the full performance.

DiStasio added that the concert took place in 2016, but posted the video in the wake of the latest incident at MSG.

“There was no one there to watch him and his goofy little band. A few people. I held up my sign. And he stopped his concert,” DiStasio, 48, told the Daily News. “I wasn’t going anywhere. First he gave me his little lecture, trying to scare me away kind of thing.

“I think he thought it was Madison Square Garden where he was running the show,” DiStasio added. “But that wasn’t the case. And I didn’t leave. I didn’t have to leave. I didn’t have a sign that was vulgar or anything. But he got bent out of shape, certainly.”

In the video from the Pilgrimage Music Fest just outside Chattanooga, Dolan interrupts his song as the frontman of JD & the Straight Shot to tell DiStasio, “Why are you here?”

DiStasio responds, “I’m a fan of music.”

Then Dolan goes, “You’re a fan of music and you’re holding up that sign? Don’t you think that’s a little negative? Anybody else here thinks that’s a little negative?”

It sounds like one person in the crowd boos.

“I’m going to invite you to leave,” Dolan said.

“What do you say?” Dolan asks the crowd. “So everybody else can have a good time.”

“Okay, you going to do that now? Thank you. Good bye.”

James Dolan couldn’t handle a fan’s criticism at a music festival a few years back. (Frank Franklin II / AP)

DiStasio grew up an avid Knicks fan in Waterbury, Conn., but later moved to Tennessee. He said he attended the music festival to see other bands, but couldn’t pass up the opportunity to express his displeasure with Dolan in person.

DiStasio wasn’t at all surprised when he saw Dolan kicking out a fan Sunday who told him to “sell the team.”

“I thought it was par for the course, 100 percent,” DiStasio said. “The guy doesn’t care about the fans, at all. That’s the thing about James Dolan. He doesn’t care about the fans. He cares about the money. That’s it.”

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