If you are still reading this article after that absurdly bold prediction in the title, I appreciate it. One can take a look at that heading and completely bash the article without even reading it but I can assure you that I have some facts, and opinions, to back it up. The beginning of the Knicks season has been absolutely atrocious to say the least and they hadn’t given their fans any signs of hope until recently. From James Dolan representing himself as the Jerry Jones of the NBA and the Knicks showing 0% of the team chemistry that won them 54 games and the Atlantic title last season, New York has been the laughing-stock of the league. So with their star player with basically one foot out the door, why do I feel that these horrid Knicks will turn it around? I’m glad you asked.
1. Texas Trip Turnaround
In the Knicks most recent 3-game road trip to Texas, every analyst predicted that New York would be manhandled from San Antonio to Houston and finally in Dallas. If you watched those 3 games you would know that was clearly not the case. Somehow, the injury plagued Knicks pulled off huge victories in San Antonio, which has been the hardest arena to play in during the 17 year Duncan Era, and Dallas, which is always a tough spot to succeed. They did lose to Houston but only because of the bonehead play from Mr. Weed himself, JR Smith. Regardless of the win-loss record from the 3 day trip, the Knicks were playing with a swagger that they had seemed to have lost since the end of the Celtics playoff series last year.
2. Iman Is Back!
Outside of Carmelo Anthony, every Knicks fan knew that for us to have a big season Iman Shumpert would have to live up to his potential. Obviously, in New York Knicks fashion, trade rumors surfaced involving Iman within 2 days into the season. That would rattle any athlete, let alone a 3rd year player who is entering his first full season after ACL surgery. Now I am not placing all of Shumpert’s early season woes on rumors but it definitely didn’t help. All of the energy we all saw last year seemed to have dissipated and the Knicks looked like they were stuck with a shell of the former Knicks Tape creator. If you don’t know what the Knicks Tape is, here is a video that was made prior to the 2012 season:
This was the type of swagger that helped fuel the Knicks all last season. In this most recent Texas trip, Knicks fans were delighted to see the artist formerly known as Iman playing like we knew he could. I expect the second half of this season to be huge for Iman to showcase his talents.
3. Getting Healthy is Key
Like most of the NBA, the Knicks have been hit hard with the injury bug. Every single player, except for Andrea Bargnani ironically, has been sidelined with at least one injury whether significant or not. As of this moment, only Felton and Prigioni are still hurt but rumor has it that Raymond will be making a reappearance soon. I honestly believe that if Melo, Tyson, Shumpert and (laugh all you want) Stoudemire can stay healthy, then the Knicks pose a tough matchup for anyone in the league. I wouldn’t mind if JR Suck goes down with a tattoo injury of some sort because he is the one player who just doesn’t seem to be able to get his shit together.
4. Bench Energy
Over the past 2 seasons, the Knicks have had one of the deadliest benches in the game. Their depth was so good that no one injury could really throw them off of their game. Somehow, all of their depth vanished in a season where it looked like on paper they had gotten deeper. Well, JR proved he really is just a punk with athleticism (yet Woodson still gives him way too many minutes), Prigioni wasn’t showing the comfort level he had last year and STAT and Kenyon were really showing their ages as the season began. Even the acquisition of Metta Worldpeace didn’t pan out the way New York had hoped, but recently Knicks rookies Tim Hardaway Jr and Toure Murry have provided that spark that has been missing all year-long. They add tenacity and Defense to a team that needs it oh so badly. Kenyon has began to show glimpses of the guy who went to back to back NBA Championships with New Jersey and STAT is finally giving us some of those skills he paid Hakeem Olajuwon $200,000 to teach him. As long as the bench can provide energy, the Knicks will win games.
Let’s call a spade a spade. The Atlantic division is a joke and no one should feel proud winning it but someone will and I believe it will be the Knicks. With Lopez out for the season Brooklyn doesn’t stand a chance and there is no way that Toronto will keep up this type of play, especially when they trade away Lowry. That leaves Boston and Philadelphia…enough said. I am not saying the Knicks will win the Atlantic because they are a great team, I am saying they will win it because the rest of their division is pathetic!
As a huge New York Jets, Mets and Knicks fan, Monday was a very trying day for me. Even though everything that could go wrong went wrong , I have taken more of an optimistic view over my three teams. Yesterday, the New York Jets proved the world correct by finally ending what I consider to be the most pathetic and embarrassing season for a franchise that has been a joke for most of its existence. The New York Mets became the first team since 1998 to trade away the past year’s Cy Young Award winner by dealing fan favorite RA Dickey to the Blue Jays (1998-Blue Jays traded Roger Clemens to the Yankees). The New York Knicks had a visit from the most popular player in the league a year ago, Jeremy Lin, and got shellacked by him for the second time this season. If you are a fan of any of these teams, or all three like myself, then Monday looked like and extremely rough day. I am going to explain why I feel there is a silver lining for each of these tumultuous events.
Let’s start with J-E-T-S (Just End The Season); Thank God they did! I have never in my life rooted for one of my teams to lose…except for last night. The Jets have been an absolute CIRCUS since the end of last season. The acquisition of Tim Tebow was a mistake from the get-go and not once did the Jets and their coaching staff try to rectify that situation. The pathetic Offensive Coordinator, Brian Schottenheimer, was fired only to be replaced by an even worse one, Tony Sparano. Mark Sanchez’s ability as a QB receded worse that Lebron James’ hair line. The Jets had arguably the worst receiving core in NFL history and couldn’t develop a running attack against any formidable opponents. So why was I rooting against the Jets yesterday, even with their playoff chances still intact if they had won? Because it would have all been the same shit again next year if the Jets showed even the slightest bit of success. With this mortifying loss on Monday Night Football last night no Jets fans will ever have to watch Mark Sanchez at the QB position ever again! Ii has been announced that Greg McElroy will start Sunday against the Chargers. The Jets GM, Mike Tannenbaum, is either going to be replaced or he is going to be put on such a hot seat that he will have no choice but to fix this never-ending pile of issues. The Jets need to be completely revamped and there is no way that would have happened without them losing last night so there is the silver lining.
My New York Knicks have not given their fans much to complain about this season. They have the best record in the Eastern Conference and have looked like a title contender the whole year. They have really only hit one speed bump this season and their name is the Houston Rockets. The last time the Knicks had to worry about the Rockets was in 1994 when they met in the NBA Finals and went to an exhilarating game 7 which the Knicks inevitably ended up losing. Ever since Jeremy Lin left the Knicks for a more than generous contract with the Rockets, there has been a target on his back. Unfortunately for the Knickerbockers, that target was too small to see because for the second time this season, Jeremy Lin and the Rockets manhandled them. I never had any ill will towards Lin once he left, especially because I knew what the Knicks overall plan was and he just wasn’t the right fit for Woodson’s game plan. So what’s the upside to the Knicks losing twice to a supposedly inferior team? First, the Rockets most likely won’t make the playoffs this year so the Knicks won’t be playing them again until next year. Secondly, there was no way the Knicks were going to go 77-5 so we were bound to lose eventually. Finally, the real silver lining behind this most recent loss at the Garden to the slightly above average Houston Rockets is that we now know exactly what we need Iman Shumpert and Amare Stoudemire for. Shumpert wasn’t really an issue but everyone was questioning where Amare would fit in and the truth of the matter is that STAT is an extremely talented player and in situations where Melo or even Tyson or Kidd or Felton are out with injury, STAT can be a viable option that can help earn that W.
The New York Mets are very good at being very bad. Outside of a handful of years that Mike Piazza was destroying anything in his way, the Mets have been completely irrelevant for nearly a quarter century. Last year the Mets let one of their franchise’s greatest players ever, Jose Reyes, leave to their divisional foe, the Miami Marlins, due to their money issues. Worst part about that was that Reyes was coming off of his best ever year and the National League Batting Title. Yesterday, the Mets completed a trade with the Toronto Blue Jays which ended with the reigning CY Young Winner and Mets fan favorite RA Dickey leaving after one of the greatest pitching seasons in NY Mets history. So how can losing your best pitcher and biggest ticket attraction have any positives behind it? Well, I’ll start by saying that with or without Dickey, the Mets were not going anywhere any time soon. Having said that, the Mets have no money and they need to figure out new ways to rebuild a franchise that does not have much going for it right now. I feel that they did the right thing by signing David Wright for pretty much the rest of his career. Now they have to figure out who will hit around him and what direction they want their franchise to go. Between Wheeler and Harvey the Mets have some talented pitching coming up soon. In the trade for Dickey, the Mets acquired arguably one of the best young talents in the Minors, catcher Travis d’Arnaud. On top of that they saved a butt load of money and have positioned themselves to be a formidable opponent within a few years. I see some bright things in the Mets future and I think it starts with Travis d’Arnaud.
So even if you are still having a hard time recovering from yesterday’s exhausting and trying events, just know that each of them have a silver lining and everything should be okay soon enough.
If you are a basketball fan, then you were definitely tuned in for the first ever game between the newly formed inner-city rivalry New York Knicks and Brooklyn Nets. This was a make up game that was postponed due to the devastating destruction caused by Hurricane Sandy. One of the biggest questions heading into this contest was whether or not these teams could be considered a rivalry or not. If it wasn’t a rivalry before the game, it sure as hell is now. While the outcome of 96-89 win for the Brooklyn Nets was a disappointing one to Knicks fans like myself, the atmosphere around the game was absolutely brilliant for the NBA and especially New York.
My boy NYBobby recently wrote about how the Brooklyn Nets deserve more praise then they are getting for their impressive start the season (https://sports-debaters.com/2012/11/18/big-ups-to-brooklyin/). I, of course, gave him a hard time and explained that to get quality press you must get quality wins. Since that article, the Nets had a huge win over the LA Clippers, who are a top 3 team in the Western Conference, and last night they pulled out an even bigger win against the then Atlantic Division leading Knicks. Now the Nets sit tied on top of the Atlantic Division with the Knicks and I feel that I owe them some recognition. Clearly, the Brooklyn Nets are a team to recon with this season and while I still rank them behind the Knicks, the disparity between the two isn’t nearly what I thought it was.
Last nights game was a lot more then just a regular season win for the Brooklyn Nets and loss for the New York Knicks. The game was played in the Nets new stomping grounds, the Barclays Center, and boy was it rocking. The turnout for the game was way more electrifying then I thought it could be and both teams were represented well by their supporters. While the commentators seemed to think the crowd was a 60-40 split in favor of the Nets, I thought it was 50-50. There were actual points in the game where I couldn’t tell if a play went good or bad for the Knicks because they had an equal amount of fans and haters. The stadium was a very unappealing mix of black, silver, blue and orange and the intensity was high.
Throughout the game, I was on the phone with Bobby talking about how exciting this regular season game was. I rarely put much stock in any of the first 50 games of an NBA season as teams are just trying to find their footing. That being said, the Knicks and Nets clearly new what this game could mean for the city and after the Nets big win, the city of New York now has 2 #1 teams to root for. While I am Knicks fan through and through and I will never root against them, I do now have a small place in my heart for New York’s newest team. New York has not had two quality teams in the same sport since the Subway Series between the Mets and Yankees back in 2000. The Jets, Giants and even the forgotten Bills are never good at the same time, or in the Bills case…ever, and the Mets always seem to suck when the Yankees are thriving, which is almost always.
A lot of people are saying that the Nets and Knicks can’t be considered a rivalry because neither has been relevant in quite some time, but that’s not how I see it. Knicks/Nets games has always been an important matchup on each teams respective calendars for a while now. Just because neither team has been good recently shouldn’t take away from the intensity that both teams bring out of each other. In their first battle as newly minted inner-city rivals, the two teams fought tooth and nail to earn a “W” and the Nets came out victorious in an exhilarating overtime thriller. Sure, the Knicks were without Jason Kidd, Iman Shumpert and Amare Stoudemire and the Nets were completely healthy, but I’m not an excuse maker and the Nets deserved the win. Deron dominated Raymond and while Melo and Tyson had their best games of the season, it just wasn’t enough to defeat the scrappy Nets.
As tough as last nights loss was, I am very happy to know that the Knicks will not have to wait long to pay the Nets back with a taste of their own medicine as the two teams will face off once again on national television Tuesday, December 11th in the Barclays Center and then again on December 19th in the Garden. Firstly, I want the Knicks to win because I just love the Knicks. Secondly, I want the Knicks to win to shut Charles Barkley and Shaq the hell up. Congratulations to the Nets for their hard fought victory and I know I will be ready for another exciting game two weeks from today. Sit back and enjoy the ride New York because it looks like our city has two teams that are looking to make some noise this year.
It has been an extremely trying time for everyone affected by Hurricane Sandy. While a lot of people were impacted by the treacherous storm, the Tri-State area was hit especially hard. It was without question one of the worst disasters that mother nature has ever inflicted upon the Northeast. In a time when people have lost many of their belongings, some even their lives, all of us in the Tri-State area needed something to lift our spirits. In times of depression, many people turn to sports to distract themselves from their hardships. Knowing this, the New York Knicks made it their mission to make sure they didn’t give New Yorkers more to be upset about.
The New York Knicks were supposed to start their regular season last Thursday against their new inner-city rivals, the Brooklyn Nets. Unfortunately for fans of each of those teams, Hurricane Sandy ravaged the city so badly that Mayor Bloomberg and the NBA decided to postpone the game until later in the season. The Knicks second game was scheduled for the next day and was a match up against the defending NBA Champions, the Miami Heat. While a lot of people thought the game was going to be cancelled, the Mayor decided that Manhattan had recovered enough to go through with it and have the Knicks and Heat battle it out to open New York’s regular season. No one in their right mind would ever want to start their season facing the clear best team in the NBA, but the Knicks had a city to defend and something truly special cause to play for.
Before the opening tip, Carmelo Anthony addressed the crowd and showed his and the Knicks support for all of those affected by the storm. While his speech was short, it was very effective and got the crowd roaring. From the jump ball to start the game until the final buzzer, the Knicks had a fire in their eyes that I haven’t seen since the days of Ewing and Starks. There was no way they were going to lose this game. Not only were they going to beat the defending Champs, but they were going to obliterate them in front of a sold out arena that wouldn’t stop shaking in excitement. Carmelo led the team with 30 points but the game was the true definition of a full team effort. There are a lot of new faces on the Knicks squad this year and every single one of them made an impact to make this game one of the most entertaining and fulfilling opening nights I have ever witnessed.
Two days later, the Knickerbockers had another game at home against one of their division rivals, the Philadelphia 76ers. Once again, the arena known as the Mecca of basketball was sold out and the crowd was going nuts before the game even started. As a matter of fact, the Knicks got penalized during the camaraderie with a delay of game warning due to the new rule about being ready for tip off within 90 seconds of the lineup announcements (https://sports-debaters.com/2012/10/17/rules-are-made-to-be-broken/). The Knicks came out firing and like their game against the Heat, New York seemed to be hitting anything they threw up. From Carmelo in the post to Novak behind the arc, the Knicks scored in a plethora of ways. Raymond Felton and Jason Kidd, with a little help from Pablo Prigioni, had Knicks fans easily remove Linsanity from their minds with precision passing and quality ball control only seen on winning teams.
The Knicks third game of season was the following night, once again against the 76ers in the second game of a home-and-home. This was the first Knicks road game of the season and to quote my man Walt Clyde Frazier, they came out with some “tenacious defense” and were “wheeling and dealing” on offense. This game started a little differently for the Knicks as they found themselves down 10 early on and looked slightly sluggish. Their struggles lasted merely a few minutes because they started popping from deep and quickly took the lead. Once they had their lead they never relinquished it as they went on to win for the third straight game. Not only was this the Knicks third in in a row but it was their third straight win by more than 15 points, which they had never done in their history of season starting.
So as the Knicks sit at 3-0 and have to wait until Friday to play their fourth game, there are many questions that linger over them. Are the Knicks truly as good as they looked in their first three games? Will they still be playing this well once Amare Stoudemire returns from his most recent injury? Should Knicks fans be getting excited about their early success? Is it too soon to celebrate? Regardless of what you think, I for one am thrilled about how the Knicks have opened the season and really do appreciate how they have been able to divert my attention during a truly trying time. LET’S GO KNICKS!!!
Houston, we have a prob’lin’! The past 24 hours has been an absolute roller coaster ride for the New York Knicks organization. Just one day after Jeremy Lin signed an offer from the Houston Rockets, which he heard from multiple sources in the Knicks organization that they would match, the Knicks went out and made an impressive sign-and-trade that brought former PG, Raymond Felton, back to the Garden. This surprising turn of events came as a shock to everyone, including Jeremy, who has stated multiple times that he wanted to return to the Big Apple and prove he wasn’t a fluke. Well, after the acquisition of Raymond Felton, it looks like the Knicks and the NBA’s biggest story from last season are going to part ways. Whether you were a huge fan of Jeremy Lin, like myself, or you thought he was a one-hit-wonder, the decision by the Knicks to let him leave was a smart one.
No one can deny the positive impact that Lin made not only for the Knicks organization but for the entire NBA last season, but the offer the Houston made to him was way more than he was worth. Even the Knicks, who spend money without thinking all the time, was able to see that it did not make sense, monetarily speaking, to retain Lin and his massive contract. The deal was for nearly $25 million over a 3 year span, but $15 million of that would be paid in the 2014-15 season. The problem with that deal is that the Knicks would be so far over the cap that the luxury tax would make Lin’s deal in his final season worth upwards of $30 million. That number is absolutely astronomical and no PG in the NBA is worth it.
I loved the Lin story in New York and I would have enjoyed seeing it come to fruition over the next couple of years, but I have to admit that I am very happy the Knicks are finally making winning decisions rather than publicity building ones. No one can say whether or not Jeremy will be a better player than Raymond Felton or not, but what I can guarantee is that no matter how well Lin plays he will never be worth what Houston is paying him. Lin can be great, but with Felton you know exactly what you are getting.
Felton was the Knicks starting PG for half of the 2010-11 season before he was one of the four players traded to Denver for the acquisition of Carmelo Anthony. While Raymond was with the Knicks, they were an above .500 team and Amare Stoudemire was playing his best basketball EVER! Felton was one of the main reasons that Amare was able to go on his franchise best 8-games with 30 points or more streak. No one wanted to see Felton leave, but no one could dispute the pick up of Anthony as the right decision. The two are now united in what is coming together as one of the better and more experienced teams in the NBA.
The Knicks recent offseason acquisitions should draw much different sponsors, like AARP, Depends and Viagra, because their roster is filled with a bunch of aged veterans. Kurt Thomas, turning 40 in October and currently the oldest player in the NBA, Jason Kidd (39), and Marcus Camby (38), represent some of the new, but very old, Free Agent pickups during this offseason. On top of those dinosaurs, the Knicks are the front runner’s to acquire the second oldest player in the NBA, Grant Hill. With Lin out and Felton in, this group of veteran’s look poised to compete with the best-of-the-best.
Coach Woodson, who just 3 days ago guaranteed Lin would return to the Knicks, says that they have built a win now team. That hasn’t been the thought since their 99-00 team that went to the NBA Finals, coincidentally featuring Kurt Thomas and Marcus Camby in their primes. Maybe the Knicks can convince their assistant GM, Allan Houston, to suit back up and make a call to former teammate Latrell Spreewell, so they can have a 99-00 reunion.
There is no denying that the Knicks have made some unconventional but possibly great moves this offseason. Without question, the Knicks have one of the deeper teams in the entire NBA and they now have the proper championship experience that is required to win. Let’s just hope that they work on their player’s not making bonehead moves during their free time like Jason Kidd did last night while getting into a car accident and then arrested on a DWI in the Hamptons.
Farewell to Jeremy Lin and hello to a new Knicks look that can hopefully bring winning back to NY.
Let’s get something straight, I understand that the New York Knicks have not made it easy on their fans over the past 12 years but all the whining is getting old. There are two types of Knicks fans in the world, one that bleeds orange and blue while keeping faith and supporting their team all the time, and the other is a pouting little bitch that complains about any move the organization makes and pulls their vintage Starks jersey out of the closet once the team starts winning again. I understand the Knicks have been awful in recent years and they have been the comedic punching bag of the NBA for over 10 years, but unless you are blind you can’t deny the organization has been working their asses off to turn things around.
It seems that all of these bootleg Knicks fan’s minds have been permanently tainted by the horrid dark years that the moron Isiah Thomas was responsible for in the early 2000’s. The fact of the matter is that the Knicks are not far off from becoming a contender once again in the Eastern Conference. Sure in the last two season’s, the Knicks have been eliminated embarrassingly from the first round of the playoffs but there were outstanding circumstances that definitely were not in their favor. Between Stoudemire’s stupidity and an endless array of injuries, the Knicks really didn’t have a chance in either of those series.
In the Knicks most recent attempt to bring success back to the world’s most famous arena, they came to terms with Jason Kidd of the Dallas Mavericks. The second I heard this news I knew that every Knicks “fan” that has been drinking their ‘Hater’ade on a daily basis was going to come out of their shell to criticize this signing without thinking the move over. What they see is a washed up point guard at the end of his career, what I see is one of the greatest point guards that the NBA has ever seen who is only 2 years removed from winning the NBA Championship as the starting PG. I understand Kidd is not the player he once was, but if you honestly don’t think he can help improve the Knicks than you should take your head out of your ass.
Let’s put it into perspective. The Knicks have one of the most talented scorer’s in the world in Carmelo Anthony. They have the second best defensive Center in the NBA in Tyson Chandler, who just won the NBA Defensive Player of the Year by the way. They have a highly talented and young Iman Shumpert, who definitely proved he can play with the big boys last season, and they are most likely going to retain the young phenomenon, Jeremy Lin. Now I can mention Amare as a formidable player, but he has given me no reason to do so.
With all that being said, I have a few reason’s why this Jason Kidd acquisition will work in the Knicks favor. If nothing else, Jeremy Lin will be able to play out his most impressionable years in the NBA under the tutelage of one of the smartest players to ever step foot on the hardwood. Kidd also has proven chemistry with Tyson Chandler, as they were both integral parts around Dirk Nowitzki during the Mavericks championship run just two years ago. Another positive that comes with Kidd is that he demands absolutely no offensive possessions, and in the isolation style of basketball that the Knicks play, that is very good news. Those should be enough reason’s to get some of these haters to shut up for a moment.
Now I am sure some of you will come at me with rubbish like, “well Melo and Amare can’t play together,” or “Lin was a flash in the pan and will suck now,” or even “Kidd is just going to be another Baron Davis.” All I can say to that is that you should just wait and see because nobody knows for sure what’s going to happen. I’m not an idiot, of course I would have rather had Steve Nash at the point, but once he was scooped up by the Lakers, Kidd was the next best choice and not such a bad one at that. Unless you wanted the Knicks to resign Raymond Felton, they went with the right choice. Mike Woodson will now have a complete off-season to get his team together and maybe build some chemistry that has been nonexistent for the past two years and if everyone can stay healthy the Knicks will be a team to fear. Will the Knicks be on the same level as the Miami Heat? Of course not, but no one will. So all I ask is that all of you crybaby supposed Knicks fan’s just shut up and roll with the punches because I see good things ahead.
Frank Francisco has nothing on this! Last week’s chicken taunt is rated PG when you compare it to what Amare Stoudemire tweeted yesterday to a fan who was taunting him. In response to a fan tweeting that Stoudemire has to come back next year, referencing the fact that he had a down year, Stoudemire sent him a direct message saying ““F*ck you. I don’t have to do any thing f*g,”. Honestly, can this guy get any stupider? Hey Amare, just because you send somebody a direct message on twitter does not mean that nobody is going to see it. What the hell is going through his mind as he is writing that?
The Knicks are paying Amare about $100 million dollars over 5 years for brilliance like this. Amare Stoudemire might be a bigger waste of money than current NBA Champion Eddy Curry. In two years with the Knicks, Stoudemire has won 1 playoff game. So he’s about 40 million into the salary and that’s what he has brought to New York. In fact, Amare has both punched as many fire extinguishers and hurt his back while practicing dunks as he has won playoff games. With his stats steadily on the decline, his injury count going up and his stupidity skyrocketing at a record pace, the Knicks need to act now to find trade him to anyone who will take a chance on this guy.
What do LeBron James, Chris Paul, Deron Williams and Dwight Howard have in common? They all make LESS money then Amare Stoudemire! Is there any wonder as to how the Knicks decision makers have run this perennial contender into the ground for over a decade now? As LeBron celebrates his first championship and Deron Williams and Dwight Howard look to join forces to do the same, Knick fans will wrongfully look at the future as being bright. If New York fans are satisfied with making the playoffs and losing in the first two rounds, then they might be ok with the current roster. The Knick fans I know are hungry for a title and there is no way that will happen with Amare sucking so much of the payroll up.
The NBA has been on the forefront of fighting anti-gay language and actions for year. After his tweet, Amare send out a message saying “I apologize for what I said earlier.I just got off the plane and had time to think about it. Sorry bro!! No Excuses. Won’t happen again.” Oh yeah, of course, a plane ride usually makes people sound like bigoted assholes, don’t worry about it Amare! Now I’m not stating anything about Amare’s beliefs, as he may have possibly just used the dumbest word possible without thinking about the message it sends, but come on man, you have to be smarter than that. Amare, you play in New York where there are millions of people with different races, religions, sexual orientations and any other background imaginable. Many of them are big fans of the Knicks and yourself. Well, at least they were.
When watching the Miami Heat and Oklahoma City Thunder battle in the NBA FInals, one thing becomes abundantly clear to the New York basketball fan. The New York Knicks are light years away from being title contenders! Though many Knicks fans celebrated their playoff berth this season, followed by their first playoff victory in a decade, I think watching the rest of the postseason really places things in perspective. The Indiana Pacers, Boston Celtics and Oklahoma City Thunder all put up a much better fight against the Miami Heat then the Knicks did, and after Miami wins its first Championship, I don’t see them losing any momentum in the next few years. Many Knicks fans were banking that legendary Head Coach Phil Jackson might enter the fold and help lead the Knickerbockers to the promised land, but apparently Coach Jackson feels the same way about the Knicks as would any other fan realist.
In an interview with HBO’s Andrea Kremer, Jackson stated that even had he been offered the head coaching position for the Knicks, he would have declined. When asked if he was interested in the gig, Jackson replied “there’s just too much work that has to be done with that team…It’s a little bit of a clumsy team.” He further explained his point by saying “they don’t fit together well. Stoudemire doesn’t fit well with Carmelo. Stoudemire’s a really good player. But he’s gotta play in a certain system and a way. Carmelo has to be a better passer. And the ball can’t stop every time it hits his hands. They need to have someone come in that can kinda blend that group together.” If the Zen Master is correct, and I tend to think he usually is, then the Knicks are in a lot of trouble with the current roster. Carmelo Anthony has been a premier scorer during his 9 NBA seasons, and we saw what happened when he was asked to pass the ball…bye bye Mike D’Antoni! With the max money the Knicks have tied up in both “Superstars”, it will be hard to trade the one that they would most like to separate from, Amare. News also came out that Iman Shumpert won’t be ready to go until December at the earliest with his knee injury, and it’s also a possibility that an injury of that magnitude can have long-lasting ill effects on a young player who depends on his defensive lateral quickness. Jeremy Lin is a free agent, and there are some skeptics who don’t know if the Knicks will, or should invest a lot of money into Linsanity.
Phil Jackson’s criticism comes as a surprise because he is known to be a Knicks supporter. Phil was drafted by the Knicks back in 1967, and established himself as a fan favorite in his role off the bench. He spent 11 years with the Knicks and was a key member of the 1973 Championship team, and also on the roster nursing an injury for the 1970 title. The Knicks haven’t won a Championship since Phil Jackson’s name was on the team’s roster, and it was believed that Jackson always possessed the desire to come back to NY to lead the Knicks to another title before his final retirement. Now Jackson was never offered the job in the first place, as the Knicks showed loyalty to Mike Woodson, but now we know that if he had been offered to him, Jackson wouldn’t touch this team with a 10 foot pole. The fact that Jackson has spent a career blending the Superstar abilities of Michael Jordan with Scottie Pippen and Kobe Bryant with Shaquille O’Neal, and he doesn’t think this current combination of Knicks talent will work should tell Knicks fans all they need to know about the immediate future. So for now, sit back and enjoy watching real NBA Superstars win a Championship from afar because according to Coach Jackson, New York will not have an up close view of true winning basketball for a long time to come.