The last couple days/weeks have been trying for our team and us, and I'm in the mood to vent about it. Levitate with me...
Exactly one month ago (seems like years doesn't it?) the Knicks made a trade. Some people loved it, saying that 2 superstars were a prerequisite to playoff success. The role players we gave up, this way of thinking went, good and young ones though they were, were replaceable. Others were upset at the way the Knicks seemingly negotiated against themselves and acquiesced to Denver's every demand. To make things worse, JD the Clueless leader of MSG shoved himself into the middle of negotiations, possibly stepping on The Don's toes in the process.
Whether you're in the first or second group, this is our new reality. If you're new to Knick fandom just because we got Carmelo, welcome. But there's a few things you might want to know first.
What made the 90s Knicks so special was the feeling that they somehow embodied us as a city. They were gritty, nasty, and most importantly didn't take any shit from Jordan, Reggie, Tim Hardaway, and later, Kobe, or anyone else. They were anti-heroes that just seemed to fit perfectly with the identity of NY's basketball communuity.
Although we're only 15 games into this new era, the feeling I get from this team is so so so different. This team already has more "talent" than any of my childhood Knick teams from the 90s, but so far their individual talents are greater than the sum of the collective.
Assembling NBA superstars to play together existed way before Miami last summer, but it has been taken to a new level now. The whole process seems inorganic and forced to me, but it clearly can work if the players in question are motivated/selfless/committed enough to make it work.
And for what it's worth, to the dude who made the "Chris Paul- You're Next" sign at the Hornets game: You fucking suck. You embody the bandwagon, superstar dick-riding mentality that is the worst of today's NBA. Chris Paul was the enemy that night, and you chose to exalt him in the hopes of him gracing us with his presence once he is a FA. Pathetic. Please stay away from our team. Thanks.
The frustration from Carmelo the last 2 games in particular, Amare's comments after the Detroit game, and Chauncey's general demeanor is not encouraging at all. But I'm willing to be patient, even if some have already lost hope (You're not alone, Rorschach.)
There are excuses. 18 games in March with little/no practice time for Chauncey and Melo to get familiar with the team and vice versa. Some blame Pringles. "Just wait for the playoffs, they'll get it together by then". "At least we beat LeBron's bitch ass!"
But excuses are like assholes...blah blah blah.
The immediate goal is to be in the top 8 of the East and see what happens from there. 6th, 7th, 8th, I don't really give a fuck as long as progress is made. It's been so long since I've seen the Knicks in the playoffs (the Nets series doesn't count) that I don't really have any hope once we get there outside of winning a few games to make sure we get 3 home games at the Garden, just to see if the feeling I got when I was a kid is still there for games that really matter.
It's up to us as fans to keep the faith. And when that day comes when the Mecca hosts a playoff game again, it's on us to make sure it feels like it did back then. No matter what you think of Carmelo and Chauncey. Because the NYK is bigger than them, and WE of all people should know that.
And to all those long time fans who won't be able to renew their season tickets next year: Hold your head. The Knicks are bigger than Dolan, and as crazy as it may seem, he doesn't own your team. YOU do. One day he'll be gone, but we'll still be here.
Have a good week everybody.