What does Amar'e Stoudemire have in common with the lead actors in the Broadway musical, "Spider-Man: Turn Off the Dark?" They're all injury prone.
But that's not the similarity that has the once-troubled Broadway show slinging more than webs at the MSG network — the New York Knicks home station — according to The New York Post's Page Six.
The show's producers' Spidey senses tingled after being dissed by an MSG ad featuring the glowering Knicks forward with a tag line touting:
"It's Friday night. You can either see a Broadway harness malfunctioning or you can watch real men fly."
Julie Taymor couldn't have been any meaner.
The Broadway show had become a running joke on the Great White Way after numerous opening night premieres were postponed partly due to malfunctions with the high-flying stunts. Five different actors were injured during the long-running previews.
After the Stoudemire ads were unveiled, Broadway fans were in a huff.
"What does it mean to be a 'real man?' " asked one blog post. "[MSG implies] it means to be an athlete on the court — but definitely not being an actor on Broadway ... Why is Madison Square Garden putting itself in competition with Broadway."
Other commentators who were Spidey-sensitive criticized the ads as "offensive," "embarrassing," "insulting to one of NYC's oldest institutions."
"I've known dancers male and female who've performed with concussions," said one performer.
A concussion? That would keep any NBA player off the boards these days.
Critics of the ad may want to temper their inner J. Jonah Jameson. Stoudemire, MSG's poster boy, is more like Peter Parker these days and has sat out more performances than any Spider-Man actor over the last two seasons. The "flying" power forward is currently out six to eight weeks with a knee injury.
MSG told The Post: "The ad was simply bad judgement on our part. We're in the process of having them immediately removed. We apologize to anyone who was offended."
The MSG network learned a hard lesson: In the battle between good and evil, Spider-Man always gets to kiss Mary Jane upside down at every show.