Wednesday, November 18, 2009

In New York, NBA Season Is Over

For the first time in New York sports history, the Major League Baseball season and NBA season both ended in November.

Not until November 5, the day after the New York Yankees won Game 6 against Philadelphia to clinch their 27th World Series title, did people in the metropolitan New York area fully comprehend how hideous the local NBA teams are.

Autopsies were being performed on the New York Knicks and New Jersey Nets while 3 million people at a victory parade showered the Yankees with confetti (and personal financial records carelessly flung by Wall Street employees).

Now, the Yankees’ brilliance is being obscured by the gloom and doom of the Knicks and Nets.

Knicks fans hope LeBron James will leave Cleveland after this season and lure another marquee free agent, like Raptors forward Chris Bosh.

But LeBron to New York seems more like a pipe dream.

What is real is the egregiousness of that collection of expiring contracts in Knicks uniforms.

President Donnie Walsh and Coach Mike D’Antoni have largely escaped public criticism because Isiah Thomas, their predecessor, was so awful.

Give Walsh credit for extricating the Knicks from salary cap purgatory.

But give Walsh hell for not drafting angelic point guard Brandon Jennings.

Jennings, taken one pick later by Milwaukee, lit up Golden State for 55 points last Saturday—the most points scored by a rookie in an NBA game since Earl “The Pearl” Monroe hit 56 for the Bullets.

Meanwhile, forward Jordan Hill, the Knicks’ first-round pick, has not earned significant playing time.

Thomas can’t be blamed for that.

Start hanging around Madison Square Garden to get your comp Knicks tickets—the way I used to in the early 1980s, the pre-Patrick Ewing era.

The 2-9 Knicks would be eligible for disaster aid from FEMA, except that the Nets are even worse.

The Nets, who may relocate to Brooklyn, or Newark, actually appeared in the NBA Finals twice in this decade.

The only problem facing those Nets was the animus between All-Star point guard Jason Kidd and his wife, Joumana.

Those were salad days compared to what’s happening now at Izod Center.

The Nets’ organization knows its product isn’t good enough to draw fans. That’s why they are using ineptitude as a selling point.

Tuesday’s game against Indiana was “10 Is Enough Night.”

Why? The Nets were a league-worst 0-10. Hence, an upper-deck ticket or lower-deck end zone seat sold for $10.

Before an announced crowd of 11,332, the Nets fell to 0-11.

Nets fans might be able to spend 70 cents for a “70 Is Enough” ticket to watch the team in April.

Seriously, the Nets are selling tickets for five designated games in which every fan gets a reversible jersey—a Nets player’s name and number on one side, and that of an opposing team’s star, e.g., LeBron, on the other.

Fans at this Saturday’s game will get two tickets for the price of one.

Who are the Nets playing?

The Knicks.

It figures.

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