NEW YORK — Even with the NBA season under way, commissioner David Stern hasn't forgotten the New York Knicks' embarrassing offseason.

In an interview broadcast Tuesday, Stern questioned the conduct of Knicks management, which lost a sexual-harassment case in early October.

Asked about the state of the Knicks, Stern told ESPN: "It demonstrates that they're not a model of intelligent management. There were many checkpoints along the way where more decisive action would have eliminated this issue."

Madison Square Garden chairman James L. Dolan, who hasn't spoken publicly since a jury ordered his team to pay $11.6 million to former Knicks' executive Anucha Browne Sanders, said in a statement Tuesday that "we have high regard for the commissioner.

"Right now, what we can all agree on is that the best thing for the Knicks is to get on the court and win some basketball games."

The Knicks open their season Friday at Cleveland.

Knicks coach Isiah Thomas was the primary defendant in the Browne Sanders lawsuit. He said he didn't hear Stern's comments but said Dolan spoke for the Knicks.

"Jim made a statement for the organization, and the statement speaks for itself," said Thomas, who has maintained his innocence since the lawsuit was filed last year.

In the past, Stern has not punished teams over civil judgments but he has not ruled out sanctions against the Knicks and Thomas. The Knicks have appealed the decision.

Stern said the case was "very much under review.

"I'm not considering any range of disciplinary action," Stern said, "but my powers are very broad if I choose to exercise them."