INDIANAPOLIS - The Knicks fired Isiah Thomas as coach two years ago, but he still hopes they cash in during the LeBron James sweepstakes.

Thomas said yesterday that he thinks James should continue his career in the Big Apple.

"Go to New York," Thomas advised. "It's the biggest stage."

Thomas said James' presence in New York would be good for the game. "I think that the interest in him in New York and in the league and everything else would just take the NBA to a higher level," he said.

Thomas, the coach at Florida International, made the statements after an Indiana University panel discussion about diversity in sports journalism. - AP

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