Statistical Analysis. Humor. Knicks.

Wednesday, July 30, 2014

[Insert Clever Title Here] <—— Conlin’s actual title

I am not a Knicks fan.

Considering this audience, I’m not sure whether I should apologize for that, or thank [insert your God here] for it. Maybe both.

I grew up in Boston, but my first real memories of Celtics basketball prominently involved Chris Ford, M.L. Carr, and Rick Pitino. Not exactly a nurturing environment for a young hoops fan.

So I’m not a Celtics fan. For reasons unknown, I never latched onto another NBA franchise for fan-dom’s sake. For the better part of my life, I’ve been walking adrift in the NBA universe with no allegiance to one team over the rest. I like to tell people that it’s because I don’t root for laundry, but that isn’t entirely true, because I’m a huge New England Patriots fan. But in the NBA? I’m agnostic.

I have been told this is weird.

All things considered, I probably SHOULD have been a Knicks fan. The last time they were in the Finals I was in diapers (although I was ten at the time, so I probably shouldn’t admit that), but they had a great deal of success throughout the decade in which my brain started to develop an affinity for pro basketball. On top of that, on some level I’m sure I was afraid that if I didn’t root for the Knicks, Anthony Mason and Charles Oakley would beat the shit out of me (I know one Knicks fan who uses this rationale).

But still, for the better part of my life, I’ve remained ambivalent about the Knicks. I’ve followed the pattern of rooting for teams that fit with my NBA world-view (playing fast, shooting threes, valuing versatility over size). As such, I rooted for the Suns in the mid-2000s, the Heat since 2011, and I even had a brief fling with the Nuggets last season (although we broke up this summer and it’s been rather painful; I don’t like to talk about it). The Knicks now fit this world-view.

This is not to say that I now bleed Blue and Orange. I just have a general affinity for the team, more so than I do for a team like, say, Chicago or Indiana or Memphis or Brooklyn. In fact, I’d consider myself both a Heat “fan” and a Knicks “fan,” an idea that I’m sure many find perplexing. But I want the Knicks to succeed. It’s just that the reasons why I want that are tough to verbalize.

For a writer, this is embarrassing.

I want the Knicks to succeed for selfish reasons. I want them to succeed because they (somewhat) fit my vision of what a successful team “should” look like, and therefore justifying my own opinions. I prefer teams that space the floor, shoot threes, play a ton of pick-and-roll, and don’t isolate inefficient scorers for low-leverage shots. The 2013 Regular season Knicks were great. The 2013 postseason Knicks were not.

I want the Knicks to succeed because the New York media machine would have a field day. The NBA Finals are generally a zoo regardless, but the NBA Finals in New York would be like the green zone of Baghdad – relatively safe, but otherwise absolute chaos. For some reason I would find this delightful.

I want the Knicks to succeed because the NBA Blogosphere deserves it. Just by nature of being the team from the biggest city in the country, there are roughly 174,000 Knicks fan bloggers on the internet. Of course, within that huge number there is a lot of noise, but some of the best NBA bloggers on the planet happen to be Knicks fans. I’m not going to list them all, only because I’d inevitably leave a few off and feel guilty about it later, but they’re out there if you look for them. Some of them are my bosses here (hi Mike, Jim, and Bob!), and a few of them I even consider friends. All of them are much better at this than I am.

But I’m excited to be a part of the never-ending conversation surrounding the Knicks. A team with effectively unlimited resources (at least by NBA standards), that also constantly continues to shoot itself in the foot, intrigues me. The one-step-forward-two-steps-back routine is understandable for a small-market team that has to keep their belt tight and keep an eye out for the bottom line at all times. But for a team that practically has a mint in their basement and can pay a $50 million luxury tax bill with the change between their sofa cushions?

That’s weird. But it’s fascinating. And I’m looking forward to jumping in head-first.

15 comments on “[Insert Clever Title Here] <—— Conlin’s actual title

  1. danvt

    Welcome Jeremy! Nice, weird post. I think you’ll actually be among like minded folks here at KB. Many don’t really act like Knick fans. Many, who are rabid Knick fans, mostly rag on the team. Not a lot of plain and simple “nut hugger fan bois” as I have been called.

    I personally hate Jim Dolan and wish the 2010 reboot had been more patiently handled. Amar’e was an A-Rod like mistake but he is a good person and him coming to the franchise was meaningful. Carmelo is a franchise player but I wish we could have brought him in as an FA and kept our resources. The difference between me and others is the gnashing of the teeth. Once it’s done I move on and keep my spirits up. Every mistake sets us back years and means that I inch closer to the grave without the championship I covet more than anything else in sport, but, on another level, 50 wins and a round or two in the playoffs is fun, so, GO BARGNANI!

    Not having an emotional connection to a team seems strange to me though. Isn’t the NBA kind of like watching a screen saver on a computer without a true rooting interest?

  2. thenamestsam

    danvt:

    I personally hate Jim Dolan and wish the 2010 reboot had been more patiently handled.Amar’e was an A-Rod like mistake but he is a good person and him coming to the franchise was meaningful.

    At least ARod carried the Yankees to a title before that contract inevitably turned to shit. All we have to show for the Amare mess is a few months of good vibrations during the regular season.

  3. EB

    thenamestsam: At least ARod carried the Yankees to a title before that contract inevitably turned to shit. All we have to show for the Amare mess is a few months of good vibrations during the regular season.

    Well A-Rod and an additional $150 million.

  4. danvt

    thenamestsam: At least ARod carried the Yankees to a title before that contract inevitably turned to shit. All we have to show for the Amare mess is a few months of good vibrations during the regular season.

    I don’t think Arod carried the Yankees to anything. Yes, he had a good post season with the bat, finally, in 2009. They were way more successful the ten years before they got him then they’ve been with him. That’s of course ignoring the fact that his cheating taints every win he “carried” them to. Actually Arod really makes Amar’e look like a prince, if not a value.

  5. thenamestsam

    danvt: I don’t think Arod carried the Yankees to anything.Yes, he had a good post season with the bat, finally, in 2009.They were way more successful the ten years before they got him then they’ve been with him.That’s of course ignoring the fact that his cheating taints every win he “carried” them to.Actually Arod really makes Amar’e look like a prince, if not a value.

    Carried may be too strong a word but there’s no chance they win the WS that year without him. His playoffs were insane not just in terms of overall production but also in terms of timing, big hits, etc. Also they had some of the greatest teams of all-time in the 10 years before ARod arrived. Don’t think that reflects poorly on him really.

    Anyway my point wasn’t top defend ARod really, just to point out that even the Yankees fuckups tend to end with a championship parade or two. For the Knicks…not so much, sadly.

  6. The Honorable Cock Jowles

    What’s the deal with the title of this post? Is Knickerblogger farming out summer interns? This has the smell of a college kid trying to get by-lines on an ESPN Truehoop Network site.

  7. DRed

    The Honorable Cock Jowles:
    What’s the deal with the title of this post? Is Knickerblogger farming out summer interns? This has the smell of a college kid trying to get by-lines on an ESPN Truehoop Network site.

    I think it’s meant to be a humorous personal introduction. Didn’t work for me, but let’s give the kid a chance to write something substantive before we pile on him.

  8. The Honorable Cock Jowles

    DRed:
    And may God have mercy on his soul if he mentions PER.

    I don’t even care if people don’t think WP48 is better than the eye-test. Just anything but PER. Please.

  9. jon abbey

    heh, I resisted commenting. honestly, anything but Silverman at this point, even Frank Isola…

  10. Z-man

    jon abbey:
    heh, I resisted commenting. honestly, anything but Silverman at this point, even Frank Isola…

    Now that’s going too far…

  11. Zanzibar

    Let Jeremy Conlinsanity begin! C’mon on, Jeremy Con_Lin? Vinny and a Summer League of writers more TKB than KB? Could all of these people be a bored Mike K’s alter egos and he’s just punking us in the dog days of summer? I ran a prose comparator which popped out that all of these writers are the same person to a 95% degree of certainty….well… not really…but a good conspiracy theory never hurts on a discussion board, especially when the convo turns to inactive roster slots.

  12. danvt

    thenamestsam: Anyway my point wasn’t top defend ARod really, just to point out that even the Yankees fuckups tend to end with a championship parade or two. For the Knicks…not so much, sadly.

    Yeah, I hear ya. I guess one player matters less to the Yanks and Arod has provided a ton of production, winning (cheating his way to?) two MVP’s, etc.. Amar’e not working out has basically submarined a half decade of Championship aspirations for NYK. Arods deal does make Amar’e's seem short term though. And now we need to prepare for the zombie Arod haunting the team for the next five years. So who knows who goes down as the bigger fiasco. If Amar’e has a second act like Antonio McDyess, maybe he won’t be considered a failure at all.

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