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Game Preview: Knicks at Nets, 10/25/2019

This is not a statement.

Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports

Don’t be snookered. There is no rivalry between the Knicks and the Nets. There is some weirdo animus wafting over from Brooklyn but it’s the figment of some lame adults diapered imagination. This damp and odious humor is just a desperately laid groundwork in an ignored search for validation.

For their part, not unlike the Nets, the Knicks have been following the track work laid by Sam Hinkie and the Philadephia 76ers. They have been tanking for high draft picks and traded away interesting players for the chance to draft a bonafide league altering talent. They have hired and fired all sorts of players in an effort to maintain financial flexibility along the way. The goal, however fickle, is to find their own home grown stars + cheap diamonds in the rough, then pair them with bonafide long term super star players. Whether they want to or not, the Knicks may have finally learned that they aren’t able to skip any steps on this staircase.

Certified genius of basketball in every way imaginable, Sean Marks has done much the same. Before the compelling mind of Mr. Marks shed light on the rubble of this franchise, the Nets collapsed under the avalanche that was the Kevin Garnett trade. Since the unmatched wit of Señor Sean, they’ve traded interesting players, maintained cap flexibility, made incremental progress and now boom. They’re where they want to be and that’s wonderful news for Brooklyn and their fans.

And to be honest, the Knicks have been clowned for so long for signing aging and injury riddled stars. It’s nice to have that in common with the Nets. We should inject bridges into our veins, not walls that you hate to see, isn’t that right, my chief?

Projected Starters

Elfrid Payton definitely wedged his way into the starting lineup after the Knicks first game against the Spurs. David Fizdale has been grotesquely thirsty for someone to make a decision on his behalf and Elfrid dumped a box of wine down his gullet in San Antonio.

Yes, these two teams play in the same town but there are larger similarities. For one, the Knicks love to throw horrendous lobs to Mitchell Robinson. The Nets are apparently doing a very similar thing.

Key Matchup & Prediction

Both teams are coming off opening night losses. The Nets went into overtime against Minnesota and coffee shop philosopher emeritus, Kyrie Irving, scored a lot of points in the loss.

No matter! Tis but a flesh wound. The real season starts the game after the first game of the season. Spencer Dinwiddie bought the whole arena calendars with today’s date circled just so we all would know. He’ll do whatever it takes to make this game about how he is better than the Knicks’ stable of guards. Then he’ll turn around and say that’s not what it’s about and it’s ludicrous for people to make it about that.

Kyrie Irving wants everyone to know that he isn’t even seeking validation. How could such a complete person and complete player be searching for validation? Rather he is the embodiment of what it means to be validated and move forward in an invalid world. But really what is forward progress in an invalid world? Can you even tell which direction he’s going? You’re probably not intelligence enuff. Here take a look:

Meanwhile, Kevin Durant is telling you that snakes and cupcakes don’t rhyme while he tries to patch his achilles tendon with string cheese and bubble gum on twitter, thinking no one can tell who it is if he clicks dark mode.

Joe Harris gets loose because Marcus Morris thinks he doesn’t have to push him onto the ground. Knicks by -8.

Warm Up Music

The Nets have started to congeal in the past two years while the Knicks have come undone and suffered faulty rebuilds for nearly two decades. That much is pretty obvious and no Knick fan in their right mind would care to make an argument to the contrary.

Is it real for real or all for sales? Brooklyn will still have to undergo a Spurs-ian level of sustained excellence to became the foundational element of basketball in New York. The Knickerbockers are the bedrock. The Nets are just the Bedford.

Brooklyn is good but all the best rappers come from Queens anyway. So, whatever.