In truth, I’ve never been able to be objective about the New York Knicks. As a native New Yorker, I grew up hating the team. In fact, they are the only New York team I don’t actively root for (the Jets and Mets are unserious franchises and don’t count). Things got even weirder when they started showing up to Dallas Mavericks games in the hopes of luring Jalen Brunson. All is fair in love and war, but it still doesn’t sit right with me. I love Jalen Brunson as a person and appreciate everything he did for Mavericks, but I pray for his downfall on the basketball court. Put it this way, if I found out my girlfriend was having an affair with him, I would have been less disappointed than I was the day he put pen to paper and signed with the Knicks.
New York Knicks (Over/Under 45.5 Wins)
Key Additions - Donte DiVincenzo
Key Losses - Obi Toppin
Outside of my natural disdain for the team, the Knicks are not a good watch. Even diehard Knicks fan will tell you that every game feels longer than the Titanic movie. There’s only so many jab steps I can watch Julius Randle take. Whether he’s barreling into the lane hoping for a foul call or assaulting the rim from three, I’d be good if I never watched another RJ Barrett possession in my life. Watching Mitchell Robinson wander aimlessly in the lane then plead his case after clotheslining an opponent irks me. Josh Hart, however, is precisely the type of player the Mavericks need. He plays the game with heart and does the little things that help teams win basketball games.
Outside of those players, the rest of the roster is one big shrug. They have too much talent to bottom out, but they are far away from being considered a legit title contender. Fortunately for Knicks, and unfortunately for me, this team is well positioned to land the next star player who asks out of his current situation. They have a bevy of picks and are an attractive destination. I am guessing the Knicks are waiting for the Embiid situation to play out. I doubt that situation plays out during the regular season and something big happens leading up to the draft. Because of that, I struggle to see how this year’s team is better than last year’s team. Unless one or two of the youngsters take a significant step forward, its going to be the same night-to-night slog.
Sure, they’ll win games, but I’m not convinced they are a lock to go over. If teams like the Bulls and Raptors manage to rebound from last year and a team or two like the Magic take a step forward, the Knicks could very well finish with less than the 47 wins they had last year.
PREDICTION - Under 45.5 WINS