New York Knicks fans are everywhere. That's a well-known fact. While it wasn't a surprise that Barclays Center broke out into cheers for the Knicks more than the Nets on Tues, it was still a poor look for the organization.
There were MVP chants for Jalen Brunson, who finished with 30 points. With the game tied at 101 late in the fourth quarter, a dazzling sequence that ended in a Julius Randle dunk led to a deafening roar from the crowd as if it were a home game.
In the final seconds, Randle motioned to the crowd to get loud, and they responded. For a game part of NBA's second annual Rival Week, Nets fans embarrassed themselves. Again, Knicks fans are everywhere, but Barclays was essentially Brooklyn's version of MSG. It's been like that for almost a year since Kyrie Irving and Kevin Durant were traded, but Tuesday's 108-103 win was another dagger to what's turned into a lifeless organization.
Knicks fans take over Barclays in New York's 108-103 win over Brooklyn
The Nets sit out of Play-In Tournament range in the East at No. 11 with a 17-26 record. The team has lost six of its last seven games, and that includes two losses to Portland, the second-worst team in the West.
Brian Windhorst said on Friday that Brooklyn is expected to be buyers at the trade deadline, not sellers. It doesn't take a genius to realize that'd be a mistake for the Nets.
It wouldn't be a bad decision for the front office to listen to offers for Mikal Bridges, who leads the team with 21.4 points per game. He's cooled off this season after a spectacular finish to 2022-23, but he'd still be a popular name on the market.
On the topic of Bridges, he was asked about the overwhelming presence of Knicks fans at Barclays, and he didn't bother to hide his disappointment.
To be fair, Nets fans haven't had much to cheer about. Brooklyn went from being an NBA title favorite to losing all three of its stars within a year, and that's something fans are still recovering from. Even if changes are made, though, nothing will change the fact that the Knicks run New York, not the Nets.
It's been a lot of fun to see things come full circle. New York, at least you'll always have the Knicks!