Archive for the Knicks Category

Greetings from the Garden

Posted in Knicks on March 11, 2012 by EAST SIDE RYNO


If anyone was wondering, Linsanity is over. Let’s all get over it.

The Return of Basketball to the CIty

Posted in Knicks on February 19, 2012 by Matthew Werblin

Over the last two weeks, I have seen something that my eyes have never before witnessed in my life.  The Knicks are officially are the talk of the town.  Yes, Linsanity was the spark that allowed for this mediocre season to be turned into a linsational one.  But what is even more impressive is how this team is growing stronger as a group rather than a single player.  The knicks roster is stacked, with its two perennial all stars in Stat and Melo leading the group.  Then followed by Chandler, Lin, Fields, Shumpert, and even Jerod Jefferies.  The depth on this roster continues as it does  stop there.  There is a sharpshooter in Novak and possible  a strong backup if  Baron Davis if he manages to stay healthy.  Last of all, we have the newest addition to the Knicks in J.R. Smith an all around “baller”.  From a team that had little to no depth in the two weeks Linsanity has taken overall the whole dynamic of this team has changed.  Now fans find themselves talking about how we can manage to get everyone on the court.  This leads us to our next problem

Coach Mike D’Antoni finally has no excuses.  He has a strong roster and finally can implement his style in to the team.  Everyone in New York for the most part wants nothing to do with the coach.  I for one, have always liked him at the helm.  I think is offensive strategy will become a major game changer come postseason.  The question that must be answers is if Coach D  has the time to earn a contract extension.  From what it looks like the players are buying into his system.  If the knicks do make a strong postseason run, I strongly believe he should comeback.  The man coached here the last 3 years with 75 different players.  Finally, he has his pieces now, its time to judge the coach.  Forget the past and live in the now.  This team has something brewing.

In a city where the Giants just won the Superbowl and the Rangers are dominating the east, I have not seen so much attention garnered  to the knicks as this.  The Giants superbowl win feels like years ago and the Rangers won’t receive the attention they deserve until the playoffs.  What the last two weeks has shown me as a New York fan is how much of a basketball city New York is.  At the end of the day, everyone in New York loves having a basketball team to finally be proud of.  I will say with all this Linsanity and the Knicks being at the center of the basketball world this could not come at a worse time for The New Jersey Nets soon to be Brooklyn Nets.  Their credibility and even more so any chance at gaining fans has been lost.  The Mecca of Basketball has reestablished itself at the perfect time.  Chances are not many current New Yorkers or Brooklynites will become Nets Fan.  When all the dust settles we will see that no matter what happens as long as the Knicks are hot the City can’t get enough of it.   That is how we know the Knicks have returned.  A  franchise that has been dormant the last decade in a matter of two weeks has become the most popular and hottest item in the city that never sleeps.


Posted in Knicks on February 11, 2012 by Matthew Werblin

The past week has been a roller coaster of emotions for New York sports fans.  From the Giants winning the super bowl to the emergence of Jeremy Lin this has been one of the most remarkable and unforgettable sports week in my life.  When he was inserted into the starting line up a week ago and blew up I thought it was just a fluke.  Three games later and a defining win over Kobe and the Lakers those thoughts have been turned into a reality.

If Jeremy continues this then the Knicks are going to be an extremely dangerous team for the rest of this year.   As of now though Lin has brought the excitment and hype to this team that has been MIA for most of the year.  Leave it too a undrafted point guard to be the hero and glue for a franchise.  The last time the Knicks had such a profound undrafted fan favorite was John Starks.  We all know what happened when he was a Knick.

The one thing I do know is that last week has been the most exciting time to watch the Knicks this whole season.  To See a nobody keep spinning and winning while posting and toasting four games in a row is crazy.  Hopefully the Knicks can take a page from the giants book and start something now.  If so the spring of ’12 could be eerily similar to the spring of ’94.

Knicks start 2012 Campaign on a Good Note

Posted in Knicks on December 26, 2011 by sammywestside

Melo was the man in the 4th quarter yesterday

Yesterday wasn’t pretty and wasn’t exactly a showing of a championship team, but the Knicks did something they haven’t done a lot of lately, beat the Celtics. The Knicks had lost a lot of openers in a row and finally overcame it, and their struggles with the Celtics. Take out the 3rd Quarter and the Knicks looked pretty good, especially on offense, but the issues on the defensive end continue.

The Knicks were completely clueless to stopping Rondo who was able to fly all over the floor with ease. They played off of him outside a lot because they didn’t fear his shot, but he still managed to penetrate too much. The Knicks new defensive presence Tyson Chandler was helpful down low, but the huge gaps in the defense were still too much for him to contain. I’m still going to wait and see how the Knicks fare against some other teams. Rondo is one of the more unique point guards in the league and he poses additional problems to the Knicks.

The Knicks leaned on Carmelo a lot down the stretch and some people are saying that the other Knicks will get upset. This is absurd. Melo was hot yesterday and carried us, maybe another day it will be Amare, or even another guy who has the hot hand. Lets not make too many impressions from one game. The Knicks won and that’s all that matters, they didn’t look bad, they didn’t look great. Let’s check back in a few weeks. For now the Knicks head out west for a three game trip, so lets see how they handle it.

It’s the First Game of the Season…Let’s All Relax

Posted in Knicks on December 26, 2011 by EAST SIDE RYNO

There's 65 more games to need for this.

When Kevin Garnett missed the final shot yesterday, I was ecstatic. But then I quickly realized that it’s only the first game of the season. Now today I’m reading all of these articles about how the Celtics-Knicks is offically a rivalry, the Knicks are a contender, etc. Let’s all take a step back and take a deep breath. Last time I checked, the Celtics won all eight games against the Knicks last season including a four game sweep in the first round of the playoffs. But since the Knicks the won the first game of the season against Boston, the two teams are even? Absolutely not. Let’s also not forget that the Celtics didn’t even have Paul Pierce on the court yesterday. Calling the Knicks and Celtics a rivalry is like calling the Yankees and Red Sox a rivalry pre-2004. If one team dominates the other for decades, that’s not a rivalry. The only way the Knicks could make this a rivalry is if they beat the Celtics in the playoffs this year.

Melo Dropped 37 points in his Season Debut

Carmelo looked like a superstar yesterday. He and Amare seem to have much more chemistry on the court than last season. Even though Tyson Chandler’s physical presence down low made a difference, he’s got to play better than that. Brandon Bass manhandled him the entire second half. At one point midway through the fourth quarter, the Knicks had only six rebounds in the second half. This team won’t win too many games if Chandler doesn’t step up when it matters. Toney Douglas was a nice surprise yesterday as well. He did a great job handling the offense and I have full confidence he can run the point this season. Before his injury, rookie Iman Shumpert looked like he could be a guy this season as well. He played strong defense for most of the game while showing us he can shoot the ball well. Unfortunately, Shumpert will be out two to four weeks with a knee injury.

The Knicks head west to take on Golden State Wednesday night.

Knicks Get Defensive

Posted in Knicks on December 11, 2011 by sammywestside

Too bad our least favorite person, James Dolan, had to ruin this exciting moment for the Knicks

If the Knicks are going to next the step in 2012, then their sign and trade of Tyson Chandler is going to be the biggest part of it. Chandler is a league veteran known for size and defensive prowess. Last season he was a quiet contributor for the World Champion Mavericks, as he brought in nearly 10 rebounds a game. Expect Chandler to give the Knicks a double-double performance a lot this year with an increased role over last year. The Knicks now feature a front court of Chandler, Amare and Melo, that’s a lot of talent right there. The question now becomes how to the Knicks get the ball to these guys.

That question was given a partial answer yesterday when the Knicks picked up free agent point guard Mike Bibby. Once a key member of the Kings in the early 2000’s, Bibby now is more of a role player with experience. He spent last year as part of the Heat and contributed nicely at times. The question is where for not his style of game fits with the Knicks up-tempo offense? Bibby has been more of a score first 1-guard throughout his career but perhaps he can distribute the ball more now with his aging game. The Knicks now have Bibby and Toney Douglas to man the point, both solid players who can score, but perhaps not the best distributors. Only time will tell to see how they can mesh with the rest of the roster, particularly Amare and Melo.

Additionally the Knicks signed on their two draft picks Iman Shumpert and Josh Harrellson. Both were peculiar picks in the draft, and might not get a lot of playing time in their first season. If one of them emerges as a surprise it could help the Knicks establish some more depth. Additionally Jared Jefferies was re-signed and once again will torment Knick fans with his invisible play. Landry  Fields figures to start at the two guard, giving the Knicks a very big starting 5, but can Fields follow up his rookie campaign with another strong performance, or will he suffer the feared sophomore slump? Only a couple weeks remain before the season tips off, and Knicks fan should be enthusiastic about the upcoming campaign, but how good the Knicks will be remains to be seen.

The State of the Knicks

Posted in Knicks on November 30, 2011 by Matthew Werblin

With the end of the NBA lockout and the eve of a busy but shortened off-season, the NBA is going to have monumental roster changes.  The one thing we know as Knick fans is the fact that the Melo trade last season left the Knicks with major holes and depth in its rotation.  Yes, the Knicks have a dynamic duo but what will be the key factor for the franchise is how the build around these two elite players.  STAT carried the Knicks last year when they were a team of scrappy mix matched players.  Melo only had 17 regular season games and carried the Knicks when Stat went down in the playoffs. Last year’s sweep to the Celtics was a reality check for the Knicks and most importantly for the fans.  We saw that Jared Jefferies is not a viable offensive option since he single handly lost Game 2, even with Melo dropping 41.  The other major hole is the fact the knicks do not have a strong center on the roster.  Billups’ age also proved to take center stage during the playoffs last year.

The Knicks have to find answers fast before the window of opportunitycloses on their two superstars.  The Knicks lost many valuable trade assets when dealing for Melo.  All most every Knicks fan has heard the rumors at Melo’s wedding about how Amare, Melo, and Chris Paul were going to create their own “big three.”  But how can the Knicks trade for CP3?  It is almost impossible to put a trade together.  The only realistic trade that would work would be trading Landry Fields, rookie Iman Shumpart, and Chauncey Billups and a first rounder.  Unfortunately, this gives the Knicks even less options to build.  This would mean they would trade their two prospects and an aging Billups.  Since the Knicks have already traded most of its first rounders for next year, they can’t rely on three players to win a championship.  It’s almost impossible.  The Heat showed us last year that without depth and consistency, three players can’t beat a whole team.  The NBA is a league that over-hypes its superstars so much that fans and followers forget that a team effort is a necessity in basketball. Superstars help win regular season games but teamwork wins hardware.  Did the 1980’s miracle team have a superstar? No.  Did the 1969 Jets have a superstar? No.  Joe Namath is one of the greatest new york sports legends but was a mediocre quarterback for his career.  It is the passion of a team that drives them to win.

The question that has to be answered is will the Knicks sell out and try to bolster an all-star squad, or do they find the right players to build a team.  In the next few weeks we will witness what road the Knicks decide on but until then, all we can do is speculate.  Jim Dolan is known for being an awful owner and right now the Knicks franchise is at a fork in the road.  They have their first opportunity in a decade to build a winning team or go the other way and build an all-star squad.  One thing for certain is that in coming days we will hear many rumors about the Knicks and one might be STAT and others for Dwight Howard.  I personally think that STAT is the heart and emotion of the team and if you trade him, how can a fan follow the franchise?

With the emergence of the Brooklyn Nets, the Knicks reign over the city is in jeopardy.  If the Knicks hand out one-year contracts or decide to make a trade, we can imagine that they are going to go down the all-star road.  If they decide to build a team, than they have a shot with destiny.  All of these factors will play a role in which decisions the Knicks make. The bottom line is that this franchise is at a make or break situation.  I just hope the Knicks can be strong and have a few good seasons.

With the Rangers on the upside and the Knicks knocking on the same door, is it too crazy to think of another spring of 94?  The opportunity is there, its just a question if the Knicks have their priorities in order.

Draft Week in New York

Posted in Islanders, Knicks on June 24, 2011 by EAST SIDE RYNO

New York Knicks

17th Overall: Iman Shumpert – Guard, Georgia Tech

45th Overall: Josh Harrellson – Forward, Kentucky (traded from New Orleans)

Overall, I am pleased with both the Knicks’ draft picks. On Thursday night, the Knicks selected Georgia Tech guard Iman Shumpert. At first, I was very disappointed. I didn’t even know who the guy was. My mind was so set on the Knicks drafting Kenneth Fareid or Chris Singleton, I didn’t even consider them drafting any one else. But after looking up some stuff on Shumpert, I’m starting to get excited about this pick. It seems that the guy isn’t only a solid scorer, but he plays phenomenal defense. In this draft, all I wanted was for the Knicks to draft defensive players. I didn’t want a scorer. Just give me some guys who could rebound and play some physical basketball. In the second round, the Knicks made a great move trading with the Hornets for the draft rights of Kentucky forward Josh Harrellson. This guy can make an immediate impact in his rookie season.He bangs bodies and isn’t afraid to lay an elbow into someone. The Knicks need this kind of chipiness in order to have a strong front court. Harrellson reminds me of an Anthony Mason / Charles Oakley type player. If Josh matches Oakley and Mason’s intensity, the Knicks may have a chance to shut down some prime time players in the paint.

New York Islanders

5th Overall: Ryan Strome – Center,  Niagara

Once again, this is a draft pick I wasn’t expecting. As soon as Gabriel Landeskog was drafted, I believed the Isles would select either defenseman Dougie Hamilton or center Sean Couturier. But Garth Snow pulled a surprise pick with young center Ryan Strome from the Niagara Ice Dogs of the Ontario Hockey League. After reading some scouting reports and watching highlight videos, I’m officially excited about Strome heading to Long Island. This dude is a true scorer. He hasn’t even 18 years old, yet he put up 106 points this past season in the competitive OHL. Every Isles fan should be excited about this pick, especially after hearing what Strome had to say after the draft:

Strome on the Islanders

“I love the colours and I think I’ll fit in great there,” Strome said. “I couldn’t be happier right now. They’re a young team. They’ve got a ton of assets. I want to grow with the team, and I want to win a championship. I know I’m young saying that, but that’s what you want to do. You want to build from the ground up and that’s what New York’s doing, and I hope to contribute to that.”

Just an all around good week for both teams. (If you want any news about the Rangers draft pick, maybe sammywestside will write an article about that. If not, that’s unfortunate for all you Blue Shirt fans).

Did Donnie Walsh Succeed as the Knicks’ GM?

Posted in Knicks on June 4, 2011 by EAST SIDE RYNO

After yesterday’s news about the departure of Knicks’ GM Donnie Walsh, a lot of Knicks fans seemed very heated. At first, I was pissed off at Dolan. He’s a moron who hasn’t made a good decision since taking over as king of the Garden in 2001. But then I started thinking, what has Walsh done for the Knicks in his three years as GM? The only positive I could think of was signing Amare Stoudemire. I know that he traded for Carmelo, but let’s look into that trade. From my standpoint, it looked as if the Knicks were completely taken advantage of by the Nuggets. Walsh constantly repeated that he would never give up his young studs Danilo Gallinari and Wilson Chandler for Carmelo. But in the end not only did he give away Chandler and Gallo, he also gave up Raymond Felton and Timofey Mozgov. Even though the Knicks also received Chauncey Billups, this trade still seemed to heavily favor the Nuggets.

Another Walsh decision that irked me was during the 2009 NBA draft. With the Knicks having the 8th overall pick, Walsh decided to draft Jordan Hill, a forward out of the University of Arizona. During Hill’s short tenure with the Knicks, he saw very minimal playing time. By the 2009-2010 season’s trade deadline, Walsh traded Hill to the Rockets for…Tracey McGrady. TMac played in a Knicks uniform during an unimportant two months then he signed with the Pistons the next year. In that 2009 draft, the Knicks could’ve instead selected Brandon Jennings, Ty Lawson, Taj Gibson, DeMar DeRozan, and many other NBA studs.

Now I can’t put all the blame on Walsh not having LeBron come to New York. I felt that Walsh did everything he possibly could to persuade LeBron to join the Knicks. But nonetheless, Pat Riley got him to sign with Miami and Walsh failed at having the best basketball player of our generation come to New York. One of the main reasons why Walsh was brought in as GM was to work on having LeBron sign with the Knicks. Obviously this didn’t happen.

Even though I am pointing out the negatives during Walsh’s time as the Knicks’ GM, it’s hard to tell how much power Walsh had when it came to these decisions. For example, with the Carmelo trade, who knows if Dolan was breathing down Walsh’s neck to make a trade? During the LeBronathon, we know that Dolan had Isiah Thomas speak with LeBron about the Knicks. So overall, who really knows if Walsh had that much say in general? But now with Walsh out, let’s all pray to God that Isiah doesn’t make an infamous return to the Garden…

See You Next Year

Posted in Knicks on April 24, 2011 by EAST SIDE RYNO