The Boston Celtics, Los Angeles Lakers, and New York Knicks are historical cornerstones cemented in basketball history. They play in three of the biggest markets in the NBA. They’ve had some of the greatest players to ever play the game. They are worth insane amounts of money.
The Celtics are currently the most well set-up team in sports. They have a lottery pick via the Brooklyn Nets. They have enough cap space to sign a max-level player in the offseason. They have a superstar in Isaiah Thomas and a budding young rookie in Jaylen Brown.
The Lakers have a core of young guys: D’Angelo Russell, Julius Randle, Jordan Clarkson, Larry Nance Jr., and Brandon Ingram, who might develop into a superstar in a couple of years. They also have cap space to sign big-name players.
And then there’s the New York Knicks.
Max contract handed to Joakim Noah. Carmelo Anthony given a no-trade clause. New York has a playoff contender on paper that’s now in the lottery.
Lets take a look at why us die hard Knicks fans deserve better.
Kristaps Porzingis is the best selection the Knicks have made in the lottery since Patrick Ewing. Ewing was the first lottery pick ever. In the post-Ewing era, the Knicks have become a staple in the lottery.
You know, when we didn’t trade away our picks.
In the ’09 draft, when Stephen Curry barely missed playing in the Mecca, New York drafted Jordan Hill with the eighth pick. The Knicks passed on DeMar DeRozan, Brandon Jennings, Jrue Holiday, and Jeff Teague.
Thats just the most notable draft year. There are countless other former lottery picks who are now just role players for other teams including Channing Frye, Danilo Gallinari, and Nene Hilario.
If you don’t have good draft judgement, then you should seek trades for the picks. Seems easy enough.
You all remember the Eddy Curry’s and the Andrea Bargnani’s, right? Yeah, me neither.
In 2005, the Knicks gave up two first-round draft picks for Eddy Curry and Antonio Davis. Two of those picks ended up being LaMarcus Aldridge and Joakim Noah.
Lets hope Porzingis never ends up like the aforementioned picks.
Another reason why Knicks fans deserve better is the treatment of our legends.
Magic Johnson, Kareem Abdul Jabbar, Jerry West, and Shaquille O’Neal all have statues outside the Staples Center.
What do the Knicks do, you ask? They exile them for years at a time. They don’t consider them priority for coaching jobs. And to top it all of, they kick them out and ban them from Madison Square Garden.
For years on end, everyone has been asking: Why isn’t Patrick Ewing with the Knicks in any capacity? He wasn’t even hired for an assistant coaching position.
Maybe he and James Dolan clashed back and forth. And we all know how Dolan handles grudges.
Charles Oakley for sure knows.
How did Dolan initially fight the backlash? He invited Latrell Sprewell to a game. Keep in mind that Sprewell is yet another Knicks legend who had been cast away for years. But if it helps his image, Dolan will bring him back.
All these factors create an unacceptable product for consumers who pay arguably the most overpriced tickets to see a blowout loss. Us fans work all week just to save money for some cheap seats in the 300s section of MSG, just to see a bad basketball team.
To make matters worse, Dolan recently responded to criticism of his tenure as team owner by calling a fan an a**hole—an accusation he’s acknowledged as true.
My point here isn’t the overpriced tickets. This is New York. But my point is that we are some of the most dedicated and devoted fans in the league.
We deserve better from James Dolan and the New York Knicks.