The On Deck Circle

The unofficial home of Real Talk

The Knicks Are Only 7 Games Out of the Playoffs!

Posted by Blake Murphy on February 11, 2008

marburyThis article has been submitted by the man in the Raiders jacket, Stu Wilkinson.

Normally I’m a pretty reserved guy. I stay on an even keel for the most part, like a version of Tim Duncan that’s only a few inches shorter but not as good at basketball. Rarely do I explode with joy or sorrow at hearing some life-changing news. But today, all that calmness goes out the window because of one thing – the Knicks are only 7 games out of the playoffs!

Usually I don’t get very excited about teams that are fighting to get back into the playoff picture. If being a Pittsburgh Pirates fan has taught me anything, it’s that getting excited about a team being 7 out of the playoffs is pretty much pointless. This time though, the situation is different. While the Pirates sport a small payroll, play in a small market, and could be considered a plucky underdog, the Knicks are loaded with money and talent, meaning that they have the resources and ability to pull off a run to the Big Show.

Now when I say that the Knicks are loaded with talent, you might say to yourself, “This guy’s crazy, the most talented player on the Knicks, Stephon ‘Starbury’ Marbury, is zach injured for the rest of the season.” That may be, but even with Steph out, the Knicks are loaded. I’m talking about Zach Randolph, Eddy Curry, Nate Robinson, David Lee, and Jamal Crawford, a solid nucleus that perfectly balances scoring and energy. If Isiah Thomas, who as a two-time world champion on the Pistons knows what it takes to get to the playoffs, can get this group playing with confidence and passion, anything can happen.

Zach and Eddy can score down low, everyone knows that. Crawford and Quentin Richardson can light it up from the outside if they want. Defensively, guys like Renaldo Balkman and David Lee can provide the energy to keep the team’s big guns focused on the game at both the defensive and offensive ends of the floor. Now, I’d be lying if I said that these elements have come together to form one cohesive unit that wins basketball games. The thing that is so tantalizing about this Knicks team is that they’ve been failing miserably with all of this talent, but they’re still only 7 games out of the playoffs. If Isiah can get everyone working together, they could make a run!

Sure, it won’t be as simple as just telling these guys to go out there and play hard. When your team is playing on one of the biggest stages in the world, there are going to be distractions. Lawsuits, off-color dogfighting remarks, marijuana cigarettes, and attractive women are all bound to cross the path of one or more members of the Knicks knicks cheerorganization. This team will have to rely on the character of its players to shut out the many distractions they face on a daily basis and stay focused on the task at hand – winning basketball games and making the playoffs.

Obviously making this turnaround will be tougher without the team’s heart and soul, Marbury. However, Marbury’s many incidents away from the basketball court may have been one of the many diversions that kept this team from realizing its potential. If the Knicks can shut out the distractions, and if they can put together their talented pieces to become a talented whole, this is a team that can make a run at the playoffs, and be a tough out to boot.

This article has been submitted by the man in the Raiders jacket, Stu Wilkinson.

3 Responses to “The Knicks Are Only 7 Games Out of the Playoffs!”

  1. Blake Murphy Says:

    Stu as usual with your love for the Knicks, I can’t tell if you’re joking or not. That said, the Knicks actually DO have enough pieces to steal a 7th or 8th seed, but with Thomas at the helm and the impending stupid trade they will make next week, I don’t see it. Even if they snuck in, they’re no match for Detroit or Boston.

    Also—Eddy Curry and Zach Randolph simply CAN’T work together, I think it’s officially proven now. Trade one, stick D-Lee in the starting lineup, and try to acquire a real point guard.

  2. stu Says:

    Randolph for Jose?

    On a serious note, how have the Knicks not signed Omar Cook to a 10 day? Is he dead or something?

    I like the idea of the Knicks getting JO for Randolph, although I really don’t like the idea of Zach going to Indiana. Another trade this quickly after the last one for Zach will really start to spread the perception that he’s not a franchise player in this league.

  3. Blake Murphy Says:

    Is Qyntel Woods a free agent? Or does his Penal League team have him inked long-term?

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