20 People who turned their backs on the New York Knicks

The New York Knicks have a troubled past.
New York Knicks, Pat Riley
New York Knicks, Pat Riley / Focus On Sport/GettyImages
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Kristaps Porzingis

Knicks fans booed when Kristaps Porzingis was drafted No. 4 overall in 2015, and they still boo him to this day when he returns to MSG as a visitor. Even though he’s apologized for how he handled his situation in New York, he’ll never be able to come back from it.

Porzingis’ rookie season was a hit; he averaged 14.3 points, 7.3 rebounds, and 1.9 blocks per game. He upped his point-per-game total the following year when he averaged 18.1 points per game, which should’ve given New York fans reason to be hopeful for his third season in the NBA. However, he skipped his exit interview at the end of the 2016-17 season, something the Knicks didn’t expect. Porzingis did so to express his displeasure with the current front office (Phil Jackson and Steve Mills). 

KP didn’t make it through the full 2017-18 season. A few weeks after being named a first-time All-Star, he tore his ACL. The Feb. 2018 game against the Bucks was his last as a Knick. 

The following season, his brother (also his agent) met with the Knicks brass a week before the trade deadline and told them that if his brother wasn’t traded, he would return to Europe to continue rehabbing. Porzingis’ brother was bold enough to give New York a list of four teams the center wanted to be traded to, but Dallas wasn’t on that list. KP’s Knicks stint ended the next day. 

In Jan. 2023, Porzingis admitted he regrets how things ended in New York. He said he “enjoyed” playing for the Knicks and that he shouldn’t have listened to others about how to handle his career. 

Porzingis had to learn that the grass isn’t greener on the other side. It’s fitting that after spending time in Dallas and Washington, he’s now in Boston, New York’s hated rival.