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#pounditThursday, December 2, 2021

Articles tagged: New York Knicks

Trae Young sends tweet about Knicks fan who appeared to spit at him

Trey Young is balding

New York Knicks fans went to great lengths to taunt Trae Young during Game 2 of the team’s playoff series against the Atlanta Hawks on Wednesday night. One fan may have taken things too far, and Young has issued a response.

Young was getting set to inbound the ball during the fourth quarter when a fan at Madison Square Garden appeared to spit at him. A video showed what looked like spit flying toward Young’s arm. The act startled a fan who was sitting in a courtside seat.

Young was too focused on the game to notice, but he responded with a tweet on Thursday.

The Hawks star is right. If a fan did spit at him, that is extremely childish.

Knicks fans received sheets of paper before Game 2 instructing them how to taunt Young. They also showered him in F-word chants during Game 1, and Young seemed to feed off of it (video here). Spitting obviously crosses the line.

A Philadelphia 76ers fan dumped popcorn on Russell Westbrook’s head on Wednesday night, and that fan was identified and punished accordingly. The same could, and should, happen if a Knicks fan spit at Young.

LeBron James wanted to sign with Knicks instead of Lakers?

LeBron James

LeBron James’ decision to join the Los Angeles Lakers has largely been validated by last year’s NBA championship. One reporter says things could have been a lot different, though.

In an appearance on the “Brian Windhorst & The Hoops Collective” podcast, Vanity Fair’s Lisa Robinson claimed that James had wanted to sign with the Knicks in the summer of 2018, but his wife objected.

“We heard that LeBron wanted to come to New York,” Robinson said, via Zach Braziller of the New York Post. “And I have really good sources about this, that he was thinking about coming to New York but that his wife wanted to be in Los Angeles, wanted the kids to go to school in Los Angeles, and that just kiboshed the whole thing.”

Maybe this isn’t so far-fetched. After all, it’s easy to interpret this old quote as being an admission from James that his decision came down to either the Lakers or Knicks. Even now, James still has nice things to say about the Knicks, and seems to root for them a little bit.

At the time, Knicks then-president Phil Jackson’s treatment of Carmelo Anthony was said to work against the team when pursuing James. Maybe the reality is James’ wife just wasn’t on board.

Report: Knicks hoping to trade for star player during offseason

Tom Thibodeau

The New York Knicks finally became relevant again this season in their first year under Tom Thibodeau, and they are hoping to use that to their advantage this summer.

As the Knicks prepare to face the Atlanta Hawks in the opening round of the playoffs, ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski says their front office is dreaming of landing a star player this offseason. Wojnarowski said on “The Woj Pod” this week that the Knicks have plenty of assets to offer in a trade and are on “disgruntled star alert.”

“I think they’re on disgruntled star alert,” Woj said. “They have draft picks. They’ve got picks coming still from Dallas. They’ve got their own. They’ve got some young players who showed growth with Tom Thibodeau — that might be appealing to people. It depends what level of star becomes available and (whether) you want to cash your chips in if they do. But I think they’re in the conversation now, or have the potential to be in the conversation, as an option for a player who might want out somewhere.”

Wojnarowski said he can’t see any obvious star players that might want a change of scenery at the moment, but “history tells us someone will emerge.”

The Knicks finished 41-31 this season after missing the playoffs the last seven. They’ve gone after almost every big-name free agent in recent years, but they always come up empty. We know they have their eye on some of the top free agents heading into this summer, though a trade may be their best chance to finally land a marquee star.

It seems like New York has already caught the attention of at least one of the NBA’s best young stars. Landing a top free agent or star player via trade would go a long way toward keeping the Knicks on the map.

H/T Bleacher Report

Tickets for Knicks’ first playoff game since 2013 are going for crazy prices

Tom Thibodeau

New York Knicks fans have eight long years of pent-up playoff demand, and the ticket prices for their first-round series with the Atlanta Hawks certainly reflect that.

Tickets for the Knicks’ playoff opener against Atlanta next week are selling for a premium on the secondary market with standard tickets long sold out. The lowest ticket price currently on SeatGeek (not including fees) is $1,001. Meanwhile, tickets in the 100 sections are going for anywhere from $1,143 to $8,087 with a maximum ticket price of a whopping $13,200.

This is the first trip to the playoffs for the Knicks since 2013. They also have homecourt advantage over the Hawks, meaning that there could be up to four games at Madison Square Garden during the series.

There is certainly a palpable excitement with this year’s Knicks, as they have annihilated the expectations that most had for them before the season. Now their postseason seats seem to be an even hotter item than Coachella tickets.

LeBron James reveals why he is happy Knicks have been winning

LeBron James

The New York Knicks are suddenly on fire in their first season under new head coach Tom Thibodeau, and at least one rival star player is happy to see it.

LeBron James took to Twitter on Thursday to give the Knicks a shoutout. Someone pointed out that New York has done nothing but win since the team released a hype video featuring the hip-hop group Dipset at Madison Square Garden. LeBron responded by saying the NBA is better off when the Knicks are a winning team.

The Knicks have won eight straight games to climb to fourth in the Eastern Conference. They appear to be headed for their first playoff appearance in seven years and have already surpassed their win total from the past six seasons.

While they have become somewhat of a laughing stock this decade, the Knicks are one of the most storied and popular franchises in sports. Zion Williamson was the latest players to explain why playing at Madison Square Garden means so much, and that sentiment is generally shared across the NBA. LeBron is right that the NBA is better off when the Knicks are relevant.

Knicks targeting Lakers guard Dennis Schroder in free agency?

Dennis Schroder

The New York Knicks have a void at point guard that could get even bigger after the season, and Dennis Schroder is one player to keep an eye on as they look to address that need.

Schroder is one of the players the Knicks will consider signing in free agency this summer, SNY’s Ian Begley reports.

New York is already in need of a consistent starting point guard, and Elfrid Payton, Derrick Rose and Frank Ntilikina are all set to become free agents after the season. As Begley notes, the Knicks are expected to have roughly $50 million in salary cap space, so they should be in position to sign a player like Schroder.

Schroder is looking for a hefty contract, which became evident when the Los Angeles Lakers tried to sign him to an extension last month. There were reports that Schroder turned down a four-year offer from the Lakers that was worth more than $80 million. He appeared to play hardball with them in negotiations.

Obviously, Schroder is confident that he can get a deal worth more than $20 million per year in free agency. The 27-year-old probably isn’t wrong about that, as he is averaging 15.4 points per game this season and has been a solid starter for the defending champion Lakers.

We know of at least one top point guard the Knicks were interested in at the trade deadline, so they are obviously planning to address the need. How aggressive they are in their pursuit of Schroder will likely depend upon how head coach Tom Thibodeau views the fit.

Knicks becoming more attractive as free agent destination?

Tom Thibodeau

When it comes to landing big-name free agents over the last several years, the New York Knicks have struck out more times than Adam Dunn. But a new dawn may soon be coming for them.

The Ringer’s Kevin O’Connor reported Monday that people around the NBA now consider New York as more of a destination than in the past. O’Connor adds that team performance and the new front office led by Leon Rose and William Wesley have gone a long way in repairing the organization’s image.

The Knicks currently have a very likable team. Headlined by younger players such as Julius Randle, RJ Barrett, and Immanuel Quickley, they are eighth in the East right now at 27-27. That puts the Knicks within striking distance of their first playoff berth since 2013.

While James Dolan is still the owner, fans seem to be feeling the changing vibes too. For a team whose last big free agent signing was probably Amar’e Stoudemire way back in 2010, the return to respectability has to feel great.

This is why Knicks could have advantage in Andre Drummond pursuit

Andre Drummond

The New York Knicks could have a key advantage to offer Andre Drummond once the center is bought out by the Cleveland Cavaliers.

The Knicks have been linked to Drummond in recent days once it became apparent that the Cavaliers would be buying out the center instead of trading him. The Knicks’ quiet trade deadline actually helps them in this regard and makes them an even bigger threat in the buyout market.

As Stefan Bondy of the New York Daily News points out, the Knicks have ample cap space that other contenders won’t be able to boast. In theory, they could offer Drummond a multi-year contract.

To be clear, there is no indication the Knicks are going to offer this. However, they can likely do more financially for Drummond than at least one of his other suitors.

For Drummond, it may come down to money vs. a desire to play on a contender. The Knicks have a solid shot at a playoff spot, but are not really a top-tier championship contender. Plus, Drummond should be taken care of by his Cleveland buyout. That may nullify the Knicks’ advantage, but it bears watching anyway.

Report: Knicks eyeing Lonzo Ball trade

Lonzo Ball

The New York Knicks are eyeing an intriguing addition ahead of Thursday’s NBA trade deadline.

According to Ian Begley of SNY, the Knicks are keeping tabs on New Orleans point guard Lonzo Ball, and are monitoring the price it would take to make a move for him. Ball reportedly has fans within the organization, though there is some debate over whether he could be considered the long-term answer at point guard if he were acquired.

The Knicks have plenty of point guards on the roster, with Elfrid Payton, Immanuel Quickley, and Derrick Rose capable of playing there. However, with the possible exception of Quickley, none of them are really long-term answers. Plus, with the Knicks surprisingly pushing for a playoff spot, they may want a bit more firepower.

If the Knicks want Ball, they’ll likely find themselves facing stiff competition. Clearly, they’re interested enough that it bears watching ahead of the deadline.

Spike Lee spotted at Madison Square Garden a year after spat with Knicks

Spike Lee

Spike Lee appears to have made amends with the New York Knicks enough to attend a game at Madison Square Garden again.

Last March, Lee loudly criticized owner James Dolan and Madison Square Garden over how they handled him using the wrong entrance to a game. The Knicks publicly disputed Lee’s version of events, which led to a rather awkward public back-and-forth between the team and one of its most prominent celebrity fans.

At the time, Lee said he was done attending Knicks games that season. A little over a year later, on Sunday, Lee was spotted at his usual courtside seat at Madison Square Garden for the first time since the 2020 incident.

Of course, even if Lee wanted to go to a Knicks game sooner than this, the option wasn’t available. Fan attendance at sporting events shut down a little more than a week after the 2020 incident due to the pandemic. Still, it seems as though Spike is ready to move on.

Notably, Lee is still willing to call out MSG when he thinks something’s wrong. He’s just to the point of going to games again.