On this day, no matter what your circumstances, you can be grateful you’re not the New York Knicks.
For a Los Angeles Clippers team that still has kinds to work out, at least they don’t need the major repairs necessary to fix 3-11 New York. Doc Rivers keeps saying he believes things are getting better for his team. No such optimism from his Knicks counterpart.
“We’ve got too many gaps right now,” Mike Woodson said.
They include a porous defense that sorely misses Tyson Chandler, their injured basket protector. There’s an offense that lacks a reliable Plan B if Carmelo Anthony isn’t scoring. And there’s the malaise that’s settling into this dispirited group, a bunch of players who look broken every time they head to the bench for a timeout, players who are getting tired of coming up with explanations for a losing streak that’s stretched to seven games after they fell to the Clippers, 93-80, Wednesday night.
“It’s mind-boggling,” Knicks guard Raymond Felton said.
The Knicks have stooped so low that they’ve even knocked the delusion out of their fan base. For decades Knicks fans were convinced they were just one trade or free agent signing away from a championship, no matter how far the gap was in reality. These days there’s none of that false hope. They don’t even get to wish for one of the talented crop of collegiate players, because the Knicks sent their 2014 draft pick to Denver in the Carmelo Anthony trade.
If Carmelo Anthony’s shots are falling they can hang in games; they only faced a four-point deficit at halftime after Anthony scored 19 points. But he shot 2 for 8 in the second half and no one picked up for him the way the Clippers managed to hold the fort after Chris Paul left with a strained left hamstring.
Seven points for J.R. Smith, two points for Iman Shumpert, four points for Amar’e Stoudemire (who had a plus/minus of minus-29 in 20 minutes).
Metta World Peace, who missed all six of his field goal attempts, attempted to frame the Knicks’ predicament in ways an interviewer would understand.
“You know life is,” World Peace said. “You had a bad hair today, you know…It is what it is. You work at it. Next time, use activator.”
If only the solution to the Knicks’ problems could be found in a bottle.