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October 16, 2009 Posted by | Live Blogging Events | , | 1 Comment

Training Camp Round-Up

Good morning folks. This afternoon is the last training camp session and tomorrow is the beginning of pre-season with the Knicks’ first game against the Wanna Be Brooklyn Nets in Albany. (Talk about your geographic confusion). There have been plenty of eyes, some behind amateur but useful video-camera shots, in Saratoga watching the Knicks try to come together as a T.E.A.M. (Together Everyone Achieves More) to borrow a oft used acronym from Mr. Cooleyhigh.  Perhaps the best way to sum it all up is “the Knicks are a work in process.”

Of course the process is the “How Do We Get To 2010 Without Looking Like Absolute Fools Process”  and that is a difficult assignment which Donnie Walsh has handed off to Mike D’Antoni this preseason.  D’Antoni has taken the task with the same positive energy he usually brings to the job, but we perceive that Mike has changed a little bit – he is no longer verbally rigid about sticking to his “offense is defense” philosophy which he (and Newsday) kept trying to sell us last season.  Now he has embraced bringing a defensive set to the minds of the players; the next step is to bring the players a defensive mind-set, but this is a process.

This year D’Antoni has made defensive pressure a part of the training camp drills, although it is hard to see the impact of those drills in the available film footage (Check out Alan Hahn’s valiant camera phone effort).  The defensive pressure is also not one of the elements noted much by the blogging eyes in Saratoga.

One of the things most Fanatics understand is that you can’t tell much about the upcoming season from training camp, but you are given some tidbits to help your analysis. It is particularly hard to determine how good players or different combinations of players are because they are all training against players who formed one of the worst teams in the NBA last year.  At this time last year we were concerned whether Jamal Crawford would find his shot which seemed to vanish until the end of pre-season and whether Zach Randolph would be able to adapt to the D’Antoni philosophy of ball movement from player to player not from Zach to Black Hole. (At the beginning of the season both Randolph and Crawford were able to adapt as the Knicks got off to a strong start before the leading scorers were caught in a salary dump, to the dump, to the dump.)

The Eyes Have It

Knicks Fans have a number of eyes at Training Camp this year including Tommy Dee of  The Knicks Blog, Alan Hahn of Newsday, Mark Berman of The Post, Seth at Posting and Toasting, and Frank Isola of the Daily News (he really offered very little observation and insight in the on-line version of the Daily News). 

According to most of these gentlemen, Friday night, the 4th night of training camp, was the most impressive as the players came out and played with considerable intensity. “The energy was awesome and regardless of what people think about this being a lost season I’m here to say that these guys are ready to compete and ready to win,” wrote Tommy Dee.  Dee’s enthusiasm is always nice, but not everyone there associated the evenings effort with the Knicks’ state of readiness for the NBA season.

Earlier, we provided you some video from T&P.  The Knicks Blog also has been providing nice multi-media coverage through the SNY-TV network. The following is their Training Camp Day 4 Video.

 

 

Regarding the intense Day 4 scrimmage according to Dee, “The best five, offensively, in terms of flow was Darko, Lee, Will, Hughes and C-Du. I’m very interested to see if that continues. They have obvious synergy, but it could be just tonight.”  Alan Hahn was more impressed with a different combination. He wrote, “The best lineup for the blues included a huge group of Gallinari, Jeffries, Lee and Milicic. That group moved the ball beautifully and seemed to have great chemistry at both ends of the floor. Milicic ran the floor well and, along with Lee, dominated the boards.” Seth at T&P added that Duhon came to life after Robinson’s squad of youngsters, including Toney Douglas, experienced some success in both trash talking and b-balling.

It’s a process.

Playa, Playa, Play On

Jared Jeffries – Jeffries remains one of the most consistent players on the Knicks.  He is a hard worker and a valuable tool. Unfortunately, Jeffries is often the poster child for offensive disabilities and his contract is one of those in the way of cap space security for fans afraid we won’t be financially prepared for the free agent shopping spree this upcoming summer.

According to Hahn, on the third night of training camp most of the players looked like their legs were dead and their shots were flat, but the “most fittest players such as Nate Robinson, David Lee and Jared Jeffries didn’t show it as much, but everyone else was clearly feeling it.”  I know, I know: Jeffries shot didn’t look as bad because it is almost always flat or a knuckleball, but I like Jeffries because he is a hard working T.E.A.M  player. By Friday night Hahn wrote, “Jeffries has looked very good in camp. He is even finding some consistency and confidence in his previously wayward shot. Not to say he’s a legit scorer, but Jeffries is trying hard to show he won’t be a liability on offense.”

Toasting and Posting wrote, “Brace yourself. Jared Jeffries has been one of the best players on the floor throughout camp. I’m serious. It was cute at first, but Jared made it clear tonight that he’s determined to be a factor. His outside shots continued to fall, and he put the ball on the floor for difficult finishes with either hand. On the other end, Jeffries hounded guards in the backcourt, then raced back to legitimately swat a few people under the basket. My friend (a Celtics fan, I’m afraid, but he appreciates the Knicks) said, without a hint of sarcasm, "he looks like Kevin Garnett out there". It was a sight to be seen.”

It’s too bad that almost every year Jeffries starts the pre-season like a gangbuster and gets injured or so it seems.  Let’s see if he makes it into the rotation on October 28th against the Heat.

Darko Milicic –Milicic, 24, is already in his seventh season. My question is not “How did he become a bust?” It’s “how many rookies has coach Larry Brown destroyed or misused in his career?”    By Friday night, Milicic dominated the boards and ran the floor well, according to Hahn, although he seemed to get hurt a couple of times, once when Toney Douglas landed on his head. Milicic understands that he can help the Knicks improve by rebounding and blocking shots.  "There’s a lot of scorers on this team, scoring is not a problem here," he said. "So I will try to help in other ways; try to rebound, try to block shots. All of this stuff is going to make this team better and get a couple of more wins, maybe for a playoff spot.”

Eddie Curry – Maybe he really is hurt.  Sometimes I regress to my conspiracy theorist days in college and I feel like Eddie Curry is not really hurt, but his conditioning is so bad that the coach does not want the rest of the world to see him practice publicly before he puts a big for sale sign on his Knick-neck.  But, he did practice the first day and he was wearing a boot while working out in the pool by the third day.  This brother is just a mess right now.  Put him on your prayer list please.

Danilo Galinari – Since he was drafted, I have been comparing his game to Jamal Crawford’s which is what I saw in the Euro-tapes.  I was not at all surprised that D’Antoni tried Gallo at the 2 spot which is a slightly better place for him, but according to Berman, “[e]ven D’Antoni admits – for all of Danilo Gallinari’s shooting grace – he still can’t create his own shot.”  That takes a chunk out of my Crawford comparison because Jamal can create his own shot with ease although the shots are not always easy to look at.

Seth at T&P was not impressed with Galinari’s speed on defense. “I think I buy the idea of Danilo Gallinari acting as a shooting guard on offense, but I’m not so down with his matching up that way on D. Gallo matched up with Nate Robinson and Marcus Landry (the latter of which isn’t nearly as ridiculous, but still) at times, and had trouble keeping up when he got screened or lost on the break. At one point, a frustrated Gallo objected to some physical positioning by Landry, and simply shoved him out of bounds with two hands. The guy’s got fire, but I wonder if throwing him out there against guards maximizes his talents.”

Toney Douglas – One of the most significant developments is that D’Antoni has already penciled Douglas in as Duhon’s back up. (Berman). This is not a surprise.  What was a surprise is that D’Antoni had practically written the rookie off as unprepared for the NBA after the Summer League.  "He didn’t have a good summer league, and it was a quick judgment and maybe made a mistake on," D’Antoni said. "He’s a lot better than I thought. He might have ran out of steam at the end of the week, and I judged him on that not being ready. Give him credit though. I showed him things he had to work on and he did."

Toasting and Posting noted, “Toney Douglas continues to impress me on defense. As an athlete, he’s unspectacular, but he’s determined to bust his ass to stay with his assignment. It’s especially refreshing to see someone get over a screen now and then.”

As I mentioned earlier, you are likely to see Douglas and Robinson on the floor together often, especially to improve the tempo of the game.  I would also not be surprised to see Douglas, Robinson and Duhon on the floor at the same time with perhaps Gallo, Jeffries or Chandler.  This combination puts Duhon in the best position offensively as he can pop the tre and play for the drive instead of concentrating on being the distributor.  It’s a small group, but until Milicic is ready, the Knicks’ best units will be smallish.

Al Harrington – Harrington is reportedly looking pretty active and aggressive, particularly on offense where he is also passing the ball around and driving to the rim which is when he is most effective.  Seth wrote, “Al Harrington, who continued to abuse every defender in his path (and a ref or two as well). I believe the word that Al’s added muscle over the summer, because he’s willing and able to bully his way to the basket and finish strong. The outside shots are falling, too.”  Solid play from Harrington will make it tough for D’Antoni to settle on a definite 8-10 player rotation.

We will get a better understanding of what all of this means when the pre-season starts tomorrow. I understand that O&B is going to try to pull together an LBE for tomorrow afternoon.  Stay tuned.

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DON’T FORGET TO ENJOY O&B’s INSIGHTFUL AND LONG LAP ON KNICK REVIVALISM

ALSO, DON’T FORGET TO ROCK THE VOTE FOR THE DANCE-SPIRIT TEAM

October 3, 2009 Posted by | Al Harrington, Chris Duhon, Danilo Gallinari, Darko Milicic, David Lee, Donnie Walsh, Eddie Curry, Jamal Crawford, Jared Jeffries, New York Knicks, Toney Douglas, Zach Randolph | , , , , , , , , , | 4 Comments

D’Antoni: “If We Lose, We Lose. . . .”

 

D'Antoni On Losing in 2009

 

Check out the following video of Training Camp Scrimmages courtesy of Posting and Toasting.

 

October 1, 2009 Posted by | Mike D'Antoni, New York Knicks | , | 20 Comments

Knicks Got Sixty-nine (69) Issues And (Hopefully) Bitching Ain’t One

oung-and-the-restless Knicks-logo Knicks fans love their basketball, but just as important as the play on the field is the drama that surrounds our home  team.  When teams like the Oklahoma Thunder and the Toronto Raptors have poor seasons from the beginning it can be easy to lose interest.  But the Knicks always have some drama going on either on the court,  in the locker room or outside of MSG.  Each year seems to have many great story lines to follow; and watching the Knicks is like watching a soap opera or at other times a situation comedy.

This year, like every other, there are many story lines to follow to hold one’s interest.  We have identified the following 69 issues or story lines that we will follow closely this season. Of course, the Scriptologists among you probably already know the resolution to most of these plotlines.  If any of you have more story lines, please share them in the comment section.

AS THE KNICKS’ WORLD TURNS

1. Will Danilo Galinari’s back hold up for 70-82 games?

2. Will Thrill Will earn his name and show more aggression consistently?

3. Will Toney Douglas become the starting point guard by the All-Star Break?

4. Will Eddie Curry ever get into “Seven Seconds Or Less” shape or revert to “Fat and Overweight” shape?

5. Will D’Antoni emphasize defense more this season or officially remove the “D” from his name?

6. Will the Knicks be in the battle for the 7th to 8th playoff spots or the NY lottery in January?

7. Will David Lee agree to a trade by February?

8. Will Darko go crazy in front of the camera again?

9. Will Walsh trade Jared Jeffries this season?

10. Will Walsh trade Larry Hughes this season?

11. Will Al Harrington or Nate Robinson be the spark plug off the bench?

12. Will the starting unit ever be Douglas, Robinson, Galinari, Lee, Chandler?

13. Will David Lee and Nate Robinson earn their million dollar bonuses and make the playoffs?

14. When the Hawks visit the Garden will Jamal Crawford receive an ovation?

15. When Jamal Crawford plays the Knicks, will he score 30 or more points or will he be guarded by Douglas?

16. Will Nate Robinson enter the All-Star Dunk competition?

17. Will Nate Robinson jump over Yao Ming to win the Slam Dunk competition?

18. Will the Scab Refs have jobs after the All-Star Break?

19. Will Toney Douglas shoot over 40% from under the arc?

20. Will Darko Milicic run the floor and play defense or rub his butt on the bench all season?

21. Will Larry Hughes hit a shot when it means something?

22. Will Larry Hughes be traded before David Lee?

23. Will David Lee continue to be the Knicks double-double man?

24. Will David Lee be forced to guard centers again?

25. Will anybody get sued by a chauffer this year?

26. Will the Newsday writers quit because of the humiliation of being told how to report on the Knicks?

27. What will Stephon Marbury do to get attention during the season?

28. Will the New York press go “goo goo ga ga” over LeBron when he comes to New York again?

29. Will Ron Artest, Kobe Bryant, Pau Gasol and Andrew Bynum humiliate the Knicks?

30. Will the Knicks get 40+ wins?

31. Will D’Antoni return to the 7seconds or Less offense or continue to emphasize the pick and roll?

32. When Galinari drive to the hole, who will he kick out to for the tre?

33. Are there enough balls for a unit including Harrington, Hughes, Galinari and Robinson?

34. Will FIU make it to the NIT?

35. How many times will LeBron tell the press he is not leaving Cleveland during the season?

36. How many times will LeBron tell the press he is going to test the free agency market?

37. Will Ratner have enough money by December to save the Atlantic Yard project?

38. Will Chris Duhon shut down Brandon Jennings for punking him?

39. Will the Knicks be able to trade Eddie Curry this year?

40. Will the truth about Eddie’s alleged knee injury last year be revealed as pretext for being out of shape?

41. Will Rasheed Wallace, Paul Pierce, Kevin Garnett and Ray Allen embarrass the Knicks at MSG?

42. Will the Knicks keep looking for a point guard during the season?

43. Will the Knicks continue to be without an All-Star Game participant?

44. Will Nate Robinson agree to a trade to the Western Conference?

45. Will Carmelo Anthony, Birdman, Chauncey Billups and K-Mart get pimp slapped by the Knicks?

46. Will Allen Iverson and Zach Randolph try to show off in the Garden and succeed?

47. Will Wilson Chandler and David Le be too much for Blake Griffin?

48. Will the press continue to treat Nate like garbage?

49. Will Wilson Chandler develop an inside game?

50. What will be Jeffries shooting percentage from under the basket?

51. How will D’Antoni use defenders like Douglas, Chandler, Jeffries, Hughes and Hill?

52. Who will complain about lack of minutes first, Darko or Curry?

53. What will Q-Rich do when he gets to the Garden?

54. Will Hill develop a consistent, strong inside move by the playoffs?

55. Will the incentive laden contract give David Lee incentive to play defense?

56. Will anybody take a charge besides Jeffries and Galinari?

57. Will someone assume the role of enforcer for the Knicks?

58. Will Stephon Marbury come to see the Knicks play in NY or LA?

59. Will Newsday ever write anything critical of Knicks management?

60. Will David Lee be able to guard Shaq while Chandler guards LeBron?

61. Will Curry’s former chauffer file for arbitration or bail on the entire process?

62. Will Newsday, which is owned by Cablevision which owns the Knicks, continue to have the most positive spin on the Knicks in New York?

63. Will Mike Breen continue to regale viewers his claims that Robinson is immature?

64. Will the New York media return to the days when black athletes had low basketball IQ’s and all the white athletes were geniuses, according to the press?

65. If the Knicks make the playoffs will Robinson and Lee share a part of their bonuses with teammates?

66. Will Chris Bosh or Joe Johnson become the Knicks’ new targets as “Saviors?”

67. Will the players make progress on the CBA?

68. Who will become the team leader?

69. Will opponents continue to enjoy their visits to the garden?

 

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September 28, 2009 Posted by | Al Harrington, Chris Duhon, Danilo Gallinari, David Lee, David Stern, Donnie Walsh, Eddie Curry, Isiah Thomas, Jordan Hill, Larry Hughes, New York Knicks, Stephon Marbury, Toney Douglas | , | 5 Comments

NEW YORK KNICKS’ STATE OF THE MOTHER FU*KING UNION

image[A CooleyHigh Joint.  Did you think we ignored this powerful LAP (long ass post)? Naaaw, we were just waiting for the right time to elevate it for R&R. As usual, Cooley’s got a dream of his own and a powerfully edgy but positive view of his fave BBall team.  Let him know what you think.  Are you buying his dream? Let’s Go Knicks.]

MONEY, MONEY, MONEY. IF IT DON’T MAKE DOLLARS IT DON’T MAKE SENSE…..

To millions of fans across the country, professional sports instills a sense of civic pride and identity. They provide a common ground for all parts of a community: black and white, old and young, rich and poor, urban and suburban.

This combination of emotion, history and entertainment makes sports a business unlike any other (Mass consumption & Multiple impressions is the name of that Flava). The suave people of New York City don’t congregate around the television or fill OUR HOUSE, or Citifield, The New Yankee Stadium, or Arthur Ashe’s Stadium, to watch the Financial Sector make transactions at Prime Time; Nor do Peeps pulling for the DEADSKINS from the District gather in great numbers to watch the Supreme Court. But rooting for our BELOVED KNICKS when they play the Boston Celtics is a natural communal activity (In OUR HOUSE, on MSG, bars, feeds beaming across state lines, even Oceans…).

This hypnotic connection between cities, fans and home-town teams is what makes it so difficult to see those teams PIMPED by conglomerates like the ultimate packaged good.

Every Fanatic posting on the thread knows Cablevision is one of the nation’s leading Media & Entertainment companies. Tapped into somewhere near a third of NYC Metro Area populace and beyond (this site is Prima Facia Evidence of their reach with the majority of fanatics posting from outside the zone; consuming their product for intel and providing your own intel as they data mine the hell out hooked BBALL junkies like US FANATICS; links pasted all over the thread acting as a distribution channel for F**KING Free; You remember how OUR TOP DAWG couldn’t even get a press pass this summer–What the F**K; purchases of merchandise; YOU KNOW YOU MOFOS HAVE A KNICK JERSEY HANGING IN YOUR CLOSET;) with their cadre of services on a myriad of platforms.

GENTS, IF IT DON”T MAKE MONEY IT DON”T MAKE SENSE… ARE YOU WITH ME SO FAR….

Now you my Brother from another Mother kicked me up to the PREMIER SUITE because my retort supplied a rosy proposition and assessment of OUR BELOVED KNICKS (KFFL). I spit smack with the best, but the GAME is fluid and we got to get down to the bear bone facts. The Lil General didn’t bolt from the bargaining table involving the REFS because he working from a position of weakness. Rather from a position of protecting the Profit Margin under the guise of hanging on to BRAND simultaneously. One loose Cannon who GAMED the system with the NBA’s major partner the Gambling Complex made this clear cost saving move possible. He’s got a group of chips that don’t really define the PACKAGED GOODS, and they slipped up because they didn’t police their own, and Mass Consumers are ambivalent about the official any GOT DAMN way… The MOFOS every Fan loves to hate. SO FU*K THEM! And, Lil general will come out smelling like a rose and this shall pass. The move indicates that Lil General has done his DUE DILIGENCE; he’s mined the data, and common sense prevails. The sport is going to see a flattening of the margins if they can contain cost. Got too. My astute BRUDDER that moves the Instruments with great flair, said it earlier, saturation has reared its ugly head, and in this current economic matrix being OVEREXPOSED has its perils….

NOW WHAT THE HELL DOES THIS HAVE TO DO WITH TURTLE WAX WASLH AND THE COMPOSITION OF OUR BELOVED KNICKS…YOU DAWGS STOP YELIING IN THE FANATIC CHAMBER, CAUSE THAT’S SOME IGNORANT SHYTE…LOL LOL LOL GET TO THE POINT MOFO!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

With Cablevision’s decision to spin-off MSG and its assets. THE SHEETS GOT TO MEET FANATICS. MSG has been sniffing around the District and other Metropolitan areas looking for land or prospective rehab facilities to create NEW ENTERTAINMENT SHOPS. What data made MSG ever consider to expand beyond the Apple. MOFOS LIKE US! The Consumption template says it is worth the risk. LIL General moved TURTLE WAX WALSH back to his origins, and the FUN, RUN AND GUN Coach, so they could run the LOAD, RINSE, SPIN STRATEGY so we POINT TO A SAVIOUR, that will keep US consuming whether by HOLDING OUT HOPE or by SHEAR ANGER AND FAN DISGUST. This a PACKAGED GOOD gents and our consumption is EMOTIONAL (Our Fanatics Posts, PRIMA FACIA EVIDENCE). The mere ILLUSION of BRON, WADE, MAMBA, or ANYBODY donning a KNICK UNI does the TRICK, don’t matter YOU GOT TO BELIEVE and you do that by SIMPLY DOING NOTHING. I Think they call it being PRUDENT. Especially when you’ve been advised you WILL WEAR A CEMENT SUIT AND END UP IN THE EAST RIVER IF YOU DON’T PLAY THIS HAND AS YOU’VE BEEN TOLD. This is Organized Business Baby… Don’t get it twisted Officials, Management that is not vested, and the tremendous product itself DON”T MEAN SHYTE. They’re nothing but a bunch of over paid punks Black, White, European, Asian, Hispanic, making THE SHORT END OF THE CHEDDAR IN THIS EQUATION AND THINK THEIR THE DEFINITION OF OPULENCE. That SHYTE is laughable!

You don’t waste cash on retreads, you don’t make moves for BULLSHYTE POINT GUARDS NAMED SESSIONS, and you don’t pay DLEE OR N8 a RAISE for what they’ve given you in return. YOU SELL THE DREAM FANATICS. It might seem trite, probably more ESOTERIC, but the SHYTE WORKS. ASK BARRY, THE POTUS!

SORRY! There will be no moves FANATICS cause YOU NEED THAT DISTRACTION, YOU WANT THAT DISTRACTION, AND IN THE END YOU DON’T CARE WHAT THEY DO YOU’RE ADDICTED TO THAT DISTRACTION… IF they make a deal! It is because it MAKES THE SHEETS MEET. IF IT DON”T MAKE MONEY IT DON”T MAKE SENSE….

So FANATICS, I prefer to SELL MY OWN MOTHER FUCKING DREAM, and that is we can win with what we got. I’m DREAMING OF career seasons for DARKO, ECURRY, BIG AL, GALLO and CREW, cause it makes me FEEL GOOD cause I AM A MOTHER FUNCIING JUNKIE LIKE THE REST OF YOU, and in a few weeks I’LL NEED MY FIX LIKE ANY OTHER GOOD KNICK/FANATIC JUNKIE WOULD. I like millions and millions of other people got that have my PACKAGED GOOD. Man I got so many JONES and NEEDLE MARKS (Yankees, Giants, Lakers, Tiger, Serena and Venus, Theatre, Museums, Movies, Dining Out, and the list goess on and on…Remind me to never let you mofos see my feet, cause that’s my secret lever for pleasure.) CAUSE IF IT DON”T MAKE MONEY IT DON”T MAKE SENSE…

HOPEFULLY FOLKS WILL CONTINUE TO BUY MY PACKAGE GOODS SO I CAN KEEP UP MY HABITS…. A Brother got to stay on his grind!

Repeat: IF IT DON’T MAKE MONEY, IT DON’T MAKE SENSE!

God Bless KnickAmerica and God Bless the New York Knicks!

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September 27, 2009 Posted by | David Stern, Donnie Walsh, Mike D'Antoni, New York Knicks | , , , | 10 Comments

Knicks Revivalism (Part I the 2010 Plan Holy Trinity)

[In keeping with Knicks’ spirit week resident blogger Orange and Blue offers his take on the divine nature of fandom and offers a positive take on the first year’s work of the new regime. Stay tuned for Part Two in which O&B questions the trajectory and moves, or lack thereof, of the new regimes. So join in and get ready to receive and  in Part 2 question the Spirit,… the Holy Spirit and Sacred Trinity of Knicks Sports Fandom!]

Fandom as Religion and Knicks Fans Messianic Dreams

Fandom is a quasi religious phenomena because of what it often entails- e.g., adoration, faith and loyalty, and zealous commitment throughout the team’s rising and waning fortunes. Examples of the quasi religious nature of fandom in general can be found in the shrines that adorn many a fanatics home, the idolization (and demonization) of players and personalities linked/associated with the team’s fortunes, and the shared and general belief amongst fans that their team, (despite their objective plight), will defy odds in any particular game, season or undertaking to carry the fanbase to the miraculous and euphoric. In the electronic age the religious experience of fandom has blossomed into different denominations as a result of the proliferation of team oriented weblogs-both corporate or private, sponsored or independent.

For the legions of Knick fans, fandom has not been an easy endeavor. With the Franchise’s last championship occurring over 35 years ago and the last championship run occurring during the 1998-99 season, the term “long suffering” has become an ever more apropos term for a fanbase whose arid plight can be likened to the Israelites march through the desert.  In the doldrums of a long championship drought, Knick fans, (and the organization as well), have searched for and sought out a Savior to lead the franchise to a championship resurrection. From the mid 1980s through the end of the century the drafting of center Patrick Ewing was supposed to usher in a return to glory but the teams at Ewing’s disposal at best came within a game of that much hoped upon return. The turn of the century then saw the Franchise pin it’s hopes, (and extend or acquire disproportionate contract offers), on the deteriorating Knees of Shooting Guard Allan Houston, and later upon the questionable character of Point Guard Stephon Marbury. Also, throughout the 1980’s into and through the turn of the century the Names of Knick adversaries such as Michael Jordan and Kobe Bryant also figured prominently in conversations about a potential Knick messiah.

“The Knicks Holy Trinity” and Revivalist Mythology for Popular Consumption

Lebron-Hahn-Walsh1

I. A Franchise’s Downward Spiral

As 1973 slips into the distant memory, the sole decade of championship contention during the 1990s appears ever more like an oasis in a vast wasteland of organizational ineptitude. But for many Knicks’ fans the recent decade at the turn of the century came to represent the worst era of franchise futility- or at least the most dubiously publicized period. For instance, personnel decisions made during the first decade of the turn of the century, (a veritable what not to do for the potential Arm Chair GM), mired the organization in bad contracts and coaching and managerial instability, which at best ended in buyouts and settlement agreements but at worst tarnished the organizations public image under the glaring ravenous lens of the local sports media hawks.

II. A Revival

But just as the Franchise approached an apparent nadir, and Knick fandom was on the verge of losing its religion, a new vision of redemption emerged onto the spotlight of Broadway for the popular consumption and sedation of legions of fans. The new vision of the franchise’s championship resurrection easily became monumental orthodoxy cast in the form of an unassailable holy trinity. That holy trinity has come to encompass the persons, personalities and essences of Donnie Walsh, Lebron James and Newsday’s sports blog coverage of the Knicks.  This holy trinity captures the spirit of the times and marks a turning of the tide against the organizational failings and imbalances since the turn of the century.

In the Knicks holy trininty, “[ ]”onnie Walsh represents the Father Figure.  Cast as a wise and timeless figure, sort of like the creator gods of many religions, it is “[ ]” onnie Walsh who is assigned the task of recreating the Knicks into a Championship contender.  According to popular belief, “[ ]”onnie Walsh’s mythic creational/transformational powers come from a vast well of experience that imbues his managerial decisions with an other worldly patience necessary to carry out a master plan for the franchises resurrection.

Walsh Ressurection

If “[ ]”onnie Walsh is the Father of the Trinity, then Lebron James is the incarnate personification of the long desired franchise savior. As basketball’s king on earth, King James, is considered the chosen one, the one who will carry Knicks fandom to the promised land of an NBA Championship that has alluded the Franchise for over 35 years.  King James has to date certainly matched and or exceeded the hype that surrounded his entrance into the NBA, by displaying the legendary greatness attributed to him, during dramatic playoff performances against the Pistons and Magic, and by carrying an average Cavaliers’ team to the top seeding in the 2008-09 NBA Playoffs.

King Lebronclip_image006

But what would the Knicks resurrection and the return of its rumored savior be if the Zeitgeist of the ever-drawing moment did not find itself in the hearts and minds of Knicks fans. To that end a trinity is nothing without it’s Holy Spirit, which is inblognated in the Cablevision bought and owned, Newsday Sports Coverage of the New York Knicks.  Newsday’s coverage of the unfolding “resurrection” is spearheaded by the highly popular reporter/blogger Alan Hahn.   Hahn’s abilities as a prolific blogger, coupled with his careful consideration to his fan base of bloggers and overall affable personality has helped Newsday’s blog the Knicks Fix become one of the more important sources for disseminating the message, spirit and belief in the inevitable return of a Knicks’ Messiah and coming of a 2010 Championship resurrection.

Alan Hahn

III. The Trilogy and “The Plan” in 2010 as a Turning of the Tide

Collectively the trinity represents a shifting of the tide for the Franchise against mistakes of prior Knick regimes at the turn of the century. For instance the hiring of “[ ]”onnie Walsh, as the Head of Basketball Operations, signaled the end of a free wheeling era that reached it’s Zenith under Isiah Thomas.  That era can be said to be marked by numerous gambles in terms of acquiring talented yet highly priced players, either: 1) who were high risk due to character issues; 2) whose statistical production did not significantly improve the organization’s opportunities to engage in and succeed in post season play; 3) whose presence resulted in roster redundancies that negated the player’s value and cut into the development of younger players. Moreover the acquisitions of several of the highly priced yet non-impact talent on the Knicks rosters came at the high cost of lost future draft picks, that were traded away in the hopes that the talent acquired would flourish under Zeke’s management and influence, where they previously had faltered or exhausted their welcomes with their prior teams. To Walsh’s credit the greater part of his first full year as Head of Basketball Operations witnessed the jettisoning of high salary, yet low value per production players such as Zach Randolph and Jamal Crawford. Walsh’s first year also witnessed the jettisoning of Knicks’ team Mascot Jerome James and the eventual dismissal of Brooklyn legend turned pariah, Stephon Marbury.

The shifting of the tide away from talented yet risky players and generally low value per production players, to an objective of targeting proven Star free agents suggested the organization had quite possibly learned certain lessons prominent in the management war rooms of the teams that had dumped their undesirables onto the Knicks roster.   To that extent the fascination with acquiring a player of Lebron James’ caliber in 2010, a/k/a “The Plan”, signals not merely a fan boy fantasy but also a partial revelation of what it might take to resurrect a moribund NBA Franchise. Thus for the Knicks Franchise a proverbial veritable lightbulb is finally turned on to illuminate the organization’s trajectory to a vision of acquiring a talent/saviour that many expect will lead the Knicks to a light at the end of the tunnel.

The Plan

Additionally, Walsh’s acquisition of Head Coach Mike “[ ]” Antoni, infused an upbeat atmosphere into the downtrodden lockeroom, while providing the players discipline and direction (on at least one side of the coaching equation). “[ ]”Antoni’s presence also signaled to the team that playing time, (with the exception of Stephon Marbury’s quarantine),  was not a given but would be earned by performance on the court and in practice. The Wally Pip Rule alluded to by Isiah Thomas, the formerly conflicted head coach and president of basketball operations, became a reality with the franchise under a separate head coach and Management. Notably, the Knicks in “[ ]”Antoni’s, first year at the helm had better balance on the line up between offensive and defensive players and youthful and veteran players on the court- e.g., the willing to utilize defensive reserve Jared Jefferies more frequently and to utilize him on opposing team’s point guards, the insertion of talented sophomore Wilson Chandler into the team’s regular rotation, the insertion of fan favorite David Lee into the starting line up.

As the franchise was steered towards an improved trajectory, Franchise ownership also directed their efforts to better controlling/combating the negative coverage of the Franchise by the local sports media outlets.  The Change in the Franchises media policy, from an iron curtain preventing reporter access to a more open approach signaling a détente with sports reporting entities was one step taken to change the Franchises image in the eyes of the local sports journals. The greater move however, involved the purchase of Newsday by Cablevision, which also owns the Knicks- and according to some even Alan Hahn. In a war for the hearts and minds of Knicks’ fans the purchase of Newsday represented the acquisition of a veritable Tokyo Rose/Axis Sally megaphone casting pro Knicks spin via Alan Hahn’s sports coverage of the Knicks as both reporter and blogger. The change in the Knicks media policy when coupled with the partisan voice cast in the Franchise’s favor by Newsday has quickly influenced other corporate Knicks’ fan blogs, which similarly disseminate the inevitability and certainty of the Knick’s Messiah’s return in 2010- see SNY’s Knicks Blog.

Tattoo

Aint “THE PLAN” Lovely?…

September 25, 2009 Posted by | 1973 Championship, David Lee, Donnie Walsh, Isiah Thomas, Jamal Crawford, James Dolan, Jared Jeffries, Lebron James., Michael Jordan, Mike D'Antoni, NBA Collective Bargaining Agreement, New York Knicks, Newsday, Patrick Ewing, Scott Layden, Stephon Marbury, Trevor Ariza, Uncategorized, Zach Randolph | , , , , , , , , | 8 Comments

Knicks To Be First NBA Franchise To Use Courtside LED Signs

The Sports Business Journal reports that the NBA has agreed to allow the Knicks to use LED courtside technology to help increase advertising revenue.

Until now, the NBA prohibited teams from using LED technology along the scorer’s table mainly because of player safety issues from the surface-mounted lights protruding from the LED signs.

But league officials gave the Knicks the green light on a new LED system after a test this summer during the WNBA Liberty home games with new LED signs by Mitsubishi that are recessed and spring mounted to the scorer’s table to protect players. ANC worked with the Knicks to create the software integration of the new signage.

The result is a new LED system that Knicks and NBA officials said allows for more customized courtside advertising inventory along with the ability for teams to tie all their scoreboard and ribbon-board LED down to court level, improving the in-game presentation.

The LED signage is considered a significant advance from the rotational signs, used by 20 teams, and the DLP or rear digital projection systems used courtside by the other teams. The LED signage will also be used to run real-time statistics and the customary fan prompts beginning with the first pre-season game on October 13th, at the Knicks’ first pre-season game against the 76ers.  According to the Knicks, the courtside signage in the MSG bowl will be coordinated with the digital signage “including MSG’s GardenVision center hung scoreboard and ribbon boards circling the middle-level, creating a 360 degree experience for fans and partners.”

But the NBA hopes the real impact is the enhancement of advertising (branding)opportunities for their sponsors (“partners” is the corporate term) and consequently more revenue for the teams.

“The advantages are it allows us to drive revenue and offer full integration opportunities with our sponsors,” said MSG Sports President Scott O’Neil. “But it allows us to better entertain fans as well.” O’Neil would not disclose the cost of the new system and said that the Knicks are repricing the value of their courtside advertising.

Steve Hellmuth, executive vice president of operations and technology for the NBA, said the DLP systems are more cumbersome than the sleeker new LED panel.

“The LED is thinner and more compact,” Hellmuth said. “The viewing angles are better, but just as important is that you can run game information and statistics, which makes it more valuable to advertisers because people will look at the signage more.”

Personally, new signage doesn’t move me one way or the other.  More real-time statistics is certainly a good thing for the fan, but a better product would be the best thing MSG could give fans in exchange for the price of a ticket.

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 DON’T FORGET TO ROCK THE VOTE FOR THE DANCE-SPIRIT TEAM

September 24, 2009 Posted by | Madison Square Garden, New York Knicks | , | 3 Comments

“Walsh, Lee, Hurry Up There’s An Expiring Contract Available In Minnie.”

Everyone is reporting the imminent signing of Nate Robinson, including those who claimed Nate would notTrade For Me Please return, but David Lee remains Walsh’s problem child as Lee’s agents search feverishly for an acceptable sign and trade so that Lee can get paid starting this season.  Lo and behold, an opportunity has opened up in Minnesota where Kahn has authorized center Mark Blount to seek a trade.  Blount is in the last year of a contract which will pay him about $7.9 million this year, almost the $8-9 million Lee is expected to get in the first year of his next long-term contract.  For Lee this is a great opportunity to effectuate a sign and trade proposal, especially since the Knicks remain in flux at center.  They are set to experiment with Darko and Curry this season.  Blount’s expiring contract would fit quite well in Walsh’s plan and after screwing the Knicks all summer, Kahn could finally do a “solid” for his mentor by taking Lee.

Regarding Robinson we are awaiting the details of his contract to be revealed, but it is reported that it is laden with performance incentives. That deal heightens the drama value of the relationship between Robinson and D’Antoni.  If the incentives are attached to assists then D’Antoni might have a few sideline smiles to share.  If the incentives are attached to points scored, score one for fantasy geeks. If they are attached to wins. . . .(Knicks’ Spirit Week, remember) then hopefully he will double his salary.

Also take note that even the press has joined in on this as “Knicks Spirit Week.”  No one is negatively reporting Darko’s arrival from Serbia today, after he missed all of the voluntary training camp.  Than goodness he’s not Zach Randolph or we would already be hearing criticism about his work ethic and whether he fits as a Knick.

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Mike Wilbon refuses to buy into “Happy Week.” Forgive him, he lives in D.C. and is from Chicago:

It won’t take as long as some might think to start to get some answers to these questions. Training camps start in a week or so and the interminable NBA season is only five weeks away…Oh one more thing: stop waiting on the Knicks, who could be the most irrelevent and overhyped franchise in all of American sports. The Knicks last won in the early 1970s and since then it’s been mostly disappointments (except the two trips to the Finals in the 1990s). Only New Yorkers think the Knicks are hugely important to the NBA. They aren’t.

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DON’T FORGET TO ROCK THE VOTE FOR THE DANCE-SPIRIT TEAM

September 24, 2009 Posted by | David Lee, Donnie Walsh, Nate Robinson, New York Knicks | , , , , , , | 20 Comments

VOTE NOW FOR THE FANATICS’ CLASSIC OLD SCHOOL DANCE-SPIRIT TEAM

O.K. friends, “Knicks Spirit Week” a/k/a “Happy Week” is in full swing and effect. Now it’s time to rock the vote.  It’s time to select the twelve icons you believe will do the best job of keeping our spirits up during the 2009-2010 campaign.
 
Choose your top 12 and let’s see which ladies we get to see most of the season. The vote will remain open until Sunday, although this post may not be the lead one for too long.  We’re expecting Nate to be signed today and Lee to be signed or traded within a few days, but each new post will have a vote reminder.
 
Tough choices, but someone has to review it and do it.  Oh, before I forget, most of the pics have an interesting surprise link for your edification or entertainment – the links range from the funny to the bizarre; like the beauty tips and gossip about Marilyn Monroe’s friendship with Dorothy Dandridge (see Monroe portfolio) to the fun fansite with French soundtrack linked to the Bridget Bardot portfolio to Jane Russell’s appearance on “What’s My Line.”
 
Have fun. Glad you enjoyed the diversionary thread. LOL (If you have a little time, make sure you check out the previous thread and the comment section – an Instant Fanatics Classic).
 
 
 

 
 
3Sophia Loren copy

 

1Pam Grier Entry copy

 

1Raquel Welch

1Rita Moreno copy 

1Dorothy Dandridge

1Marilyn Monroe copy

 

1Elizabeth Taylor 

1Gina Lollobridgida copy

1Lena Horne

2Linda Harrison

 

2Veronica Lake

 

1Rita Hayworth  

2Josephine Baker

 

2Mae West copy

 

2hedy Lamarr

 

2Yme Sumac

 

2Tina Turner  

2Mansfield

 

2Jane Russell

 

2Brigette Bardot

 

2Jayne Kennedy

 

2Ann Margaret copy    

3Lola Falana

 

2Linda Darnell

 

2Sherry Britton

 Basketball Space Filler copy copy

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FANATICS OLD SCHOOL DANCE-SPIRIT TEAM COMPETITION, GROUP 2

FANATICS OLD SCHOOL CLASSICS DANCE-SPIRIT TEAM COMPETITION, Group 1

“It’s Knicks Spirit Week”

Knicks Top 10 Plays 2008-2009, Courtesy of NBA.com

A Little Something, Something From Other Blogs and Fanatics Old School Dance Team Prep:Updated

NEW YORK KNICKS 2009-2010 SCHEDULE RELEASED

GULLIBLE’S TRAVELS: The Knicks’ 2010 Plan; Do You Believe That?

September 24, 2009 Posted by | Live Blogging Events, New York Knicks | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 4 Comments

FANATICS OLD SCHOOL DANCE-SPIRIT TEAM COMPETITION, GROUP 2

Thank God it’s Tuesday.  That means it is time to unveil the second group of lovely classics for your consideration as members of the Fanatics Dance-Spirit Team.  By popular request, Ms. Linda Darnell is a late but worthy entrant.  In fact, the following portfolios give the Fanatics the best collection of pics of classic beauties in the blogosphere.  Unless you’re a man who is completely dead from the head down, how could you not appreciate such beauty? 

 

2Josephine Baker

 

2Mae West copy 

2hedy Lamarr

 

2Yme Sumac

 

2Tina Turner

2Mansfield

2Jane Russell

2Brigette Bardot

 

2Jayne Kennedy

 

2Ann Margaret copy 

3Lola Falana

 

2Linda Darnell

2Sherry Britton

Basketball Space Filler copy copy

Previous Related Posts:

FANATICS OLD SCHOOL CLASSICS DANCE-SPIRIT TEAM COMPETITION, Group 1

“It’s Knicks Spirit Week”

Knicks Top 10 Plays 2008-2009, Courtesy of NBA.com

A Little Something, Something From Other Blogs and Fanatics Old School Dance Team Prep:Updated

NEW YORK KNICKS 2009-2010 SCHEDULE RELEASED

GULLIBLE’S TRAVELS: The Knicks’ 2010 Plan; Do You Believe That?

September 22, 2009 Posted by | Live Blogging Events | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 16 Comments