Do The New York Knicks Have A Legitimate Chance To Knock The Miami Heat Off Their Throne This Year?
Uh oh. Don’t look now, but the New York Knicks fans are back again! After watching their team struggle and then struggle and then struggle some more over the course of the last ten years or so, Knicks fans finally have something to cheer about again. As of today, the Knicks are 14-4 and sitting atop the Eastern Conference’s Atlantic Division. They also just knocked off the Miami Heat for the second time this season last night by a score of 112-92 in Miami, meaning there’s a lot of buzz and excitement surrounding the team right now. But, are they for real? Can they overtake the mighty Heat and send LeBron James & Co. packing in the playoffs later this season in order to advance to the NBA Finals?
Well, at this point, it’s not out of the question. As crazy as that sounds, the Knicks have, so far, proven that they have what it takes to play with just about anybody in the NBA. Although they haven’t played against some of the best teams in the Western Conference yet, like the Oklahoma City Thunder and the Los Angeles Lakers, they have knocked off teams like the San Antonio Spurs and Dallas Mavericks this season. They’ve also done a good job defending their home court by winning all seven of their games at Madison Square Garden. And, they’ve done it without the services of their star center Amare Stoudemire, who should be rejoining the team later this month. So, you’d have to think that, by the end of the season, they’ll be even better than they are now, right?
That’s a tough question to answer so early in the season. Right now, you’d have to say yes, especially since the Knicks are still trying to work so many new players to the team, like Jason Kidd and Raymond Felton, into the lineup and doing so successfully. But, at the same time, the Knicks are going to have to find the right chemistry and balance when Stoudemire returns in order to sustain the run that they’re on right now. There’s also a good chance that, at some point, the Knicks are going to go through a rough patch. And, when that happens, it’ll be interesting to see how they respond. If they’re able to overcome it, then the 2012-13 NBA season will probably end on a high note for them. But, if they struggle in any capacity and are unable to play their way out of their slump, expect all of those Knicks fans who are ecstatic right now to turn on them. And, then what? We’ll go back to hearing about how the Knicks are the “same old team” that they’ve been for the last ten years.
Either way, it’ll be interesting to see which way the Knicks go. But, we won’t know if they have a legitimate chance at besting the Heat until April when the playoffs start. Until then, enjoy the ride, Knicks fans. You guys deserve it.