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Knicks players love to refer to each other as "dog"

Different players of different ages, from different countries...all dogs.

Pictured: the Knicks
Pictured: the Knicks
Daniel Boczarski/Getty Images

Remember the heady days of 2012, when Raymond Felton announced his return to the Knicks by declaring, "I'm a dog?" Those were good times. Dogs are important to basketball teams. It was only later, when Felton transformed from dog to lame, frustrated penguin, that the franchise began to suffer.

Until now. The 2016-17 Knicks are going to be stacked with dogs. How do I know this? From the players themselves. Over the past two weeks, four different Knicks have been called dogs.

Courtney Lee spoke with Basketball Insiders about his new teammates, including young Kristaps Porzingis. He isn't worried about Kristaps's youth getting in the way, because he is a dog:

"KP (Kristaps Porzingis) is still learning, but he's a dog so he's going to go out there and compete."

On the opposite end of the spectrum, young incumbent Kyle O'Quinn is looking forward to learning from the dog-like tendencies of free agent acquisition Joakim Noah:

"That's his game,'' O'Quinn said. "That's why he's gotten injured, because he plays like a dog. He ain't no wuss. I think if he stays healthy, his competitive grit and grime will help guys like myself who've looked up to him throughout my career."

Derrick Rose sought to ingratiate himself with the team during his introductory press conference by letting it be known that he and Carmelo Anthony are both dogs:

"I'm happy to be playing alongside someone who I believe is a dog, just like I am"

New York already had dogs -- an old dog and a young dog -- but they needed more, so they traded for a dog and signed another dog. Is that enough dogs? Are there any other hidden dogs on this roster? Only time will tell.