Eulogy: 2011 Knicks
Dear friends, family and opponents,
we are gathered here today to say goodbye to the 2011 Knicks, the first team eliminated from the playoffs.
The Knicks have not made the playoffs for 6 years, and boy did it show. They fell apart at the end of the first 2 games in Boston and got blown out on their home court twice.
But, hope shines eternal (or at least until Amar'e gets seriously injured) in Knickerbockeland. They have two superstars, one old man who resembles someone who used to be a basketball player and 12 spare tires that can be traded in for upgrades.
Yes, in two years they might actually make it to the second round. For next year they hope to win at least one playoff game.
And, yes, somehow this qualifies as a miracle (Isiah Thomas is known to set the motions for miracles in order, finding ways to make the most valuable, best-funded and most popular franchise into David rather than Goliath.)
Yes, Thomas even found a way to mess up a trade for a player who had one team on his trade demand list (Carmelo Anthony) while he sipped pina colidas by the beach in Florida.
The Knicks gave up 3 pieces (Felton, Gallinari and Chandler), one spare part (Timofey Mozgov), a first round draft pick, a second round draft pick they received from the Warriors, and $3 million cash for a player they knew they could sign during the offseason and a point guard that was too old and too settled to want to leave Denver, plus 3 spare parts the Nuggets were happy to get rid of.
And while the Nuggets' defense immediately took off, the Knicks', who have lost their last 10 playoff games and have not won a playoff series in 10 years, struggled the rest of their season, punctuated by being the first team bounced from the playoffs.
But the future is bright with two players whose departures made their former teams instantly go from cellar-dwelling defending to one of the NBA's elite defensive team and a player Knicks' fan mut feel lucky only missed one game of the playoffs and played injured the other two....many were expecting him to lose a limb to injury or amputation this season.
So, congrats Knicks' fans, you have your playoff experience and your two stars.