Originally written on In The Neutral Zone  |  Last updated 5/2/13
Do you know that expression, “Act like you’ve been there before, and act like you’re going there again”? Obviously the New York Knicks have never heard that one before. Now let me just say that I am so angry/frustrated/upset with the Knicks performance Wednesday night that I almost didn’t write this article. However, I need to get my point across to express just how PITIFUL they were last night. Im going to very briefly start with the positives from last night: The MVP of the Knicks roster so far in this series has without question been Raymond Felton. Felton needs to stop complaining to the ref’s every time he’s called for a foul or doesn’t get a foul call, but other than that he’s been great. Last night Iman Shumpert played a nice game as well, but he is still young and raw and gets ahead of himself too often. However, his defensive intensity is unmatched and should be utilized as a weapon for the Knicks (ahem, Coach Woodson, that message is for you). Shumpert was clearly the only person who could slow down or agitate Paul Pierce last night, but somehow I kept watching Raymond Felton or Old Man River (Jason Kidd) try to guard him. Positives, check. Let’s move on to the negatives. This may take a while so get comfortable. The negatives for the Knicks started well before the opening tip of game 5 in Madison Square Garden. They started with the insanely moronic and boneheaded elbow thrown by J.R. Smith to Jason Terry’s face. This action as we all know resulted in a flagrant 2 foul, an immediate ejection from game 3, and ultimately a suspension for game 4. We also all know that the Knicks despite their best comeback efforts dropped game 4 in overtime. Now there is almost no way, on paper, for you to comprehend the hatred I have for the way the Knicks have carried themselves as of late. Forget the on court ineptitude, I’m speaking to their off court behavior. First, J.R. Smith decides to open his big ol’ mouth after the game 4 loss. He said that the Knicks would have won if he had played, and he would be spending his day off playing golf somewhere instead of preparing for game 6. Oh yeah??? That’s what WOULD have happened IF you played? That’s nice, and if the queen had balls she’d be the king. How about you (J.R.) shut your stupid mouth and apologize for your senseless actions that ultimately hurt your team. How about you say that you have grown on and off the court this season and you feel horrible that you let your emotions get the best of you in a game that was already out of reach. And lastly, how about you assure your teammates, organization, and fans alike that you will not allow anything like this to happen ever again. This is the playoffs! You need to keep your composure and stay focused on the task at hand at all times. I guess these things would have been too much to ask for huh? Silly me. Second, the Knicks decide that there is no chance on this heavenly earth that they could lose game 5 on their home court. So what do they do? They all decide to dress in all black as if they are attending a funeral for the Boston Celtics. YOU STAY CLASSY SAN DIEGO!! How are you going to act this immaturely in the midst of the 1st round of the playoffs and think it’s okay?? Plus, can anybody say bad timing? I’m sure the Einstein’s behind this idea didn’t have any real malice behind this stunt, but following the tragedy in Boston you’d think New Yorker’s would be a little more sensitive to any inclination toward death. News flash: This is the 1st round and you are the 2 seed. They are the 7 seed. You are supposed to win this series handily. So win it already. As for their lackluster play on the court, what is the main reason for Knicks losses this season? Is it: A.) They get early leads and don’t know how to blow team’s out? B.) They play lazy defense with no intensity or purpose? C.) Coach Woodson doesn’t utilize his roster effectively? D.) They turn into a one on one isolation team that stands around and watches Carmelo Anthony and J.R. Smith jack up bad shots? While most of you would pick D, the answer is actually secret option E, all of the above. These are the main reasons that the Knicks lose. This is why they lost game 5, and this is how they will lose this series if they don’t give themselves a serious wake up call. Whenever they wake up and answer that call, let me provide you with a little insight into what they need to do. Even when Melo looks to pass first he still get’s his 25-30 shots, simply because he’s Melo and that’s what he does, he shoots. The defense from the 2nd half of game 2 is what they need to copy going forward. And lastly it would be nice to see Coach Woodson get passed his hatred for Shumpert, and let him play extended minutes. He appears to be 100% and needs to put Paul Pierce on lockdown. I don’t know if the Knicks will solve all of these problems all at once, but they are an enigma sometimes. One day they will play like the Charlotte Bobcats and the next day they will play like the best team in the league. That is why the Knicks will turn right around and close out this series Friday night in Boston. It might have a little to do with an aging Celtics team playing on short rest as well, who knows? Tune in to ESPN on Friday night at 7:00 p.m. to watch the drama unfold. And ah hell, Let’s Go Knicks!!
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