The New York Knicks. A team that has been associated with the words, disappointment, terrible and abysmal for the last few years in the NBA, especially after the tragic season they had last season. However, this year, I put my money on the Knicks to make the playoffs.
Some may call me crazy, some may agree, but right here, right now, I will be explaining my bold proclamation for the 2015/2016 New York Knicks.
Last season was simply abysmal for the Knicks, there is no argument there, finishing last in the Eastern Conference, and missing playoffs for the second straight year in a row. However, the Knicks did set a new record for the franchise, with an underwhelming 17 wins and overwhelming 65 losses to end their season with, being recorded as the worst in the New York Knicks history.
In the defense of the Knicks, they were dealt with a terrible hand in draft picks, receiving a Round 2 Pick 34 and Round 2 Pick 51, where they acquired Cleanthony Early and Thanasis Antetokoumpo, who in the previous season didn’t do much to add depth to the squad.
Their bad streak didn’t end there, with all-star Carmello Anthony, deciding to sit out for the rest of the season after only playing 40 games. Losing their best player who averaged 24.2 points per game, continued to take away depth in their team, and in my opinion left the team almost unknowing how to play without him. The injuries continued to roll on in, with J.R. Smith, Pablo Prigioni, Josè Calderon and Tim Hardaway Jr., all suffering major injuries throughout the season.
They then lost their best next hope Iman Shumpert and injured J.R. Smith, who were both traded to the Cleveland Cavaliers on the 5th of January, in a three team trade, which allowed the Knicks to acquire a first round pick in the 2015 Draft this year, where they picked up Kristaps Porzingis.
After a season such as that, even the Golden State Warriors, would have had a major struggle.
Now, onto the 2015/2016 season, and why the Knicks are going to seal the deal. As mentioned before they acquired a new 7”3 power forward/center for their team, Kristaps Prozingis, who has stepped up in both preseason and now regular season games, having an outstanding NBA debut recording 16 point, 5 rebounds and 1 assist.
Carmello Anthony has returned from his knee injury last season, and has put on a show in the regular season games already. After playing just 3 regular season games, he has shown that he is going to work as hard as he can for his team, averaging 24.3 points per game, 6.7 rebounds per game and 4 assists per game.
However, the most important factor for the Knicks this year was the depth that they have now added to their roster. Last year the Knicks were limited on who they could rely on if injuries were to prevail, this year however, the whole starting 5 could be injured and they would be able to put their second strings in and still grab a win. Key players who have added depth include:
- Arron Afflalo
- Derrick Williams
- Robin Lopez
- Josè Caldron
- Kristaps Porzingis
- Sasha Vujavic
- Kyle O’Quinn
- Lance Thomas
In my eyes, this roster for the Knicks is destined for playoffs, especially by the Knicks being in the Eastern Conference, which is considered the weaker of the two conferences. Add in the powers of All-Star Carmello Anthony, and only greatness can come from this team this season.
See you in the playoffs Knicks!