New York Knicks Killed in Recent ESPN Poll


A recent ESPN Poll was published as the “Ultimate Team Rankings,” where ESPN ranked the 122 teams in the four major professional sports in the U.S. The criteria used to rank the teams were 1) Affordability, 2) Coaching, 3) Fan Relations, 4) Ownership, 5) Players, 6) Stadium Experience, 7) Bang for the Buck, and 8) Title Track.

As you can imagine, the New York Knicks did not fare well. The break down for the Knicks was as follows:

Overall Ranking: 121

Bang For Buck: 115

Fan Relations: 122

Ownership: 118

Affordability: 121

Stadium Experience: 91

Players: 122

Coaching: 108

Title Track: 112

So YIKES. This is a pretty horrendous outcome. According to ESPN, the Knicks are second to last and show no promise in any category. While I agree with some of these, there are some that I strongly disagree with.

What I Agree With

The Title Track category is right on the money. How have the Knicks only won two titles and none since 1973?! That’s a pretty significant drought for a team that plays in a major market and certainly has had the talent to do it.

The coaching category is hard to argue against. Outside of Red Holtzman, the Knicks have had two good coaches in the past 40 years: Pat Reilly and Jeff Van Gundy. They have also had a collection of some of the worst ever and most recently had Mike Woodson speeding in the wrong direction.

While I agree with ownership, I still have a disagreement as well. not that I think they should be better in this area, but rather I don’t understand how they are not 122. James Dolan is the worst owner EVER.

What I Don’t Agree With

Madison Square Garden coming in 91st? That is an absolute joke. The Mecca of Basketball is an electrifying arena and an experience like no other. Maybe their ranking dipped due to friendliness. It’s New York; toughen up.

Affordability is such an irrelevant category to rank a team by. It’s all about demand; you can’t complain about the price of tickets when they sell out literally every game. Demographics also play a huge role in this; it’s New York City, things are expensive there!

Bang for your buck I can agree a little bit with, but at the same time it’s such a silly category to include. Salary cap sports teams are limited on the amount of money they can spend on improving the team. Baseball is where this category actually matters because there is no salary cap preventing the ownership from spending more money to improve the team. The Knicks are way over on the luxury tax showing, which shows that they are trying to spend as much money on the players as possible; they just haven’t been the wisest decisions.

Which brings me to my next point. The Knicks were ranked dead last in “players.” Effort on the court and likability off it is how the category is described. You’re telling me that the Knicks try the least of any sports team and are less likable than Aaron Hernandez? The Patriots are ranked 16th in this category and the Ravens are 26th. Need I say more?

Having the worst “Fan Relations” is mostly due to the above categories. People are angry when their team doesn’t win. The Knicks don’t win. Neither have the Charlotte Hornets, but they will change their jerseys every year to please fans with new merchandise.

The Knicks are bad right now. This poll was a way for fans to attempt to kick them while they’re down. Give it a year of Phil Jackson and let’s see how this poll looks.