For the second time this month, a New York Knick has been the target of a robbery. But this time, things got violent.
Shortly after leaving CityScapes Gentlemen’s Club in Queens on Wednesday morning, Knicks forward Cleanthony Early was reportedly held up by a group of six individuals wearing ski masks. He had entered an Uber car around 4:15 a.m., but the vehicle was boxed in a mile away from the strip club in a coordinated robbery. According to the Daily News, the thieves made off with a gold necklace, the gold caps on his teeth and some cash.
Early, 24, was also shot in the right knee during the stick-up and was taken to Elmhurst Hospital, where he is in stable condition. New York’s WABC-TV reported that the Uber driver and the woman Early was with also escaped serious injury.
The Knicks released the following statement on Wednesday morning: “We are aware of what occurred with Cleanthony Early this morning and are relieved that he is not in a life-threatening situation. We will not comment any further until we receive more information.”
Following the incident, current and former teammates took to Twitter to express their shock and support for Early.
— Kristaps Porzingis (@kporzee) December 30, 2015
Everybody please have my brother @Clearly_BallLyf in your prayers today. I’m lost for words. Sick, sick world we live in.
— Nick Wiggins (@Wiggys__WORLD) December 30, 2015
Early, a Bronx native, was selected in the second round of the 2014 NBA Draft by the Knicks out of Wichita State. He has appeared in 10 games this season, averaging 0.7 points and 0.2 rebounds in 3.4 minutes per contest. He played 29 seconds in the Knicks’ victory over the Pistons on Tuesday.