69th Season of
NEW YORK KNICKS: In its debut, the Triangle didn't quite fit Madison Square.
No playoffs last season.
No Mike Woodson this season. No Tyson Chandler or Ray Felton either.
Although Phil Jackson signed on late last season, and started putting his stamp on the Knicks during the off-season, the Triangle Era officially started Wednesday night and failed miserably.
The byproduct of their 104-80 defeat to the Bulls was the season's first excuse. The Knicks played Wednesday night without Jose Calderon, who will miss the next 2-3 weeks with a strained calf. He was brought in to execute Jackson's triangle offense. Now they'll just have to wait.
The real problem, however, was a lack of effort. That came out of Knicks mouths after the game, not mine. Someone dressed in a Knicks uniform indeed said the team quit.
No need to point fingers though. It is better if they all understand not to say anything they wouldn't want Phil Jackson to hear. That is now a sure way to abbreviate one's Knicks career.
Then came Thursday night's effort in Cleveland against LeBron James and the suddenly resurgent Cavaliers.
Did new head coach Derek Fisher press the right buttons? We don't know. But, after sleepwalking in the 1st quarter, they pulled within 2 points by the half. The Knicks then took control in the 3rd quarter en route to a 95-90 victory.
LeBron James led all players with 43 minutes, but struggled to shoot 5/15 from the floor, with 17 points, and an uncharacteristic 8 turnovers. He was the Cavs' third leading scorer behind Kyrie Irving's 22 and Kevin Love's 19 points.
Carmelo Anthony scored a game high 25 points and led the Knicks with 6 assists. Quincy Acy led the Knicks with 10 rebounds.
That's it. Until the Knicks play the Charlotte Hornets this weekend, the season is a tale of two very different games, two very different efforts (eh hem, Iman Shumpert), with very different results.