Sunday, April 3, 2011
Knicks Avoid Disaster; Clinch Playoff Berth
Rest easy for at least one night, Knicks fans. Despite the apocalyptic feel of the past couple weeks at the Garden, the Knicks have clinched their first playoff berth in 7 years, thanks to a rare Wizards road win and an even rarer Knicks win over the Cavs Sunday night. Read more after the jump...
It sure has been ugly for Mike D's guys over the past month or so, losing to every kind of team possible while fans were forced to watch the ex-Knicks dominate the league in Denver (a loss tonight would have been doubly painful seeing how the Nugs beat the hottest team in the NBA, the Lakers earlier today). I watched most of the Lakers-Nuggets game today, and I got a queasy feeling watching Felton and Gallinari and the rest of them running all over the champs, (either that or it was the Irish Car bombs from Saturday night). But all of the doom sayers can take a break for at least 2 weeks when the first round of the playoffs begins. The Knicks can now begin to rest Amare (who was starting to resemble Ewing circa 2000 of late) and Chauncey a little bit. It would still be nice to close out the regular season strong and at least finish with a .500 record (something that hasn't been done at MSG in 10 years) so it would be wise to not sit the big 3 entirely, no matter how badly they need some rest.
This mini win streak over this past week hasn't erased the Knicks' issues, of which there are many. They still don't play dominant defense for an entire game (even though they've shown some improvement) as can be seen in the scores they gave up to New Jersey and Cleveland, their rebounding can still be atrocious (Stoudemire had one more rebound than Herb Williams did on Wednesday), and they're still a 3 (sometimes 2) man team. But at least the downtrodden Knicks fan has something to look forward to at the end of April besides those free food nights at the Garden. They'll still be lucky to get a game or two off of Miami, Boston or Chicago, but screw it, the Knicks are in the playoffs. Let's enjoy that for now.