New York Knicks: 10 Keys to Making the Playoffs

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Nov 10, 2014; New York, NY, USA; Actor and director Spike Lee reacts during the fourth quarter between the New York Knicks and the Atlanta Hawks at Madison Square Garden. The Hawks defeated the Knicks 91-85. Mandatory Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports

3. Protect This House

When a team is playing at home, it should be favored to win. That isn’t an unfathomable request or standard, but instead something that rings true throughout sports at every level.

In 2014-15, the New York Knicks must get back to making Madison Square Garden a difficult place to come into.

New York was 10-31 at home in 2014-15, and that isn’t exactly a rare occurrence. In 2013-14, when the team was at least strong enough to compete, it went 19-22 at Madison Square Garden.

That can’t happen again in 2015-16.

New York’s magical 2012-13 season was built on the strength of a 31-10 home record. There was top-heavy talent, of course, but there were also role players—does anyone remember sharpshooter Steve Novak?— who’d come onto the floor and bring the Garden to life.

If New York can win roughly 23 games at home in 2015-16—something that seven Eastern Conference teams did in 2014-15—it’ll have a legitimate chance to make the playoffs.

Next: Selfless Offense