However, there was one shining light: the young star that you would pay to go see. The young star who was on his way to the All-Star game in just his third season and the undisputed face of the franchise.
There wasn’t going to be much to watch down the stretch, but at least you could tell your buddies, “Hey, at least we have KP.”
A week ago, Knicks fans all collectively sighed when Kristaps Porzingis went down awkwardly trying to finish a dunk, hitting the Garden floor hard.
He limped off the court, and the hope was maybe it wasn’t that serious. Maybe KP dodged a bullet like he did earlier in the year against the Miami Heat, but it was not to be.
Knicks fans worst fears were realized when word came down that Porzingis tore his ACL and will miss not only the rest of this season, but a good chunk of 2018-2019.
Here we go again. “The Knicks are cursed, the franchise is hopeless, what else is new?”
I heard a ton of that over the coming days and I totally get it. It’s the way I felt waking up in the days after the injury.
However, a few days removed – and, of course, the longterm health of Kristaps Porzingis has to be a major concern - I was able to see a potential silver lining.
The Knicks were not a good basketball team even with KP on the floor. They have holes, are very much a work in progress, and don’t even come close to resembling a championship contender.
The only way the Knicks are going to be able to find those sort of pieces alongside Porzingis is through the NBA Draft.
The injury to KP is going to make the Knicks that much worse between now and the end of the year.
I get that the idea of “tanking” is not going to sit well with some Knicks fans, but it’s the best thing the franchise can do between now and then.
Accumulate as many ping-pong balls as possible in the lottery. Ensure a top pick in June’s NBA Draft, and pick a player who can make a significant difference for years to come.
The Knicks may have the chance to do so over the next two seasons, and it’s their best path back to serious relevance.
It’s not fun and it takes time, but it’s very difficult to win in the NBA.
It’s not easy, and it’s very rare for a franchise to execute the quick fix unless you are telling me Lebron James is coming to town.
The best way to build is through the draft, find the right difference makers and watch them bloom.
The Knicks will have to take the advice of Dr. K, the wonderful doctor from the mega hit “This Is Us.”
“Take the sourest of lemons and turn it into lemonade.”
You can listen to me on Thursday from 1 to 6 a.m., Sunday and Monday from 2 to 6 a.m. on WFAN Sports Radio 660/1019 FM, and Friday, Monday & Tuesday from 10 p.m. to 2 a.m. on CBS Sports Radio.,/i>