The New York Knicks have now lost three in a row, four of their last five and are just 7-9 since the mega-trade that brought superstar Carmelo Anthony and point guard Chauncey Billups from the Denver Nuggets. After Monday night's meltdown against the Boston Celtics, there is a lot of unrest around the Knicks and their fan base.
Despite their struggles, the Knicks did not free-fall in this week's SB Nation NBA Power Rankings. Instead, the Knicks stayed right where they were a week ago -- at No. 15 in the overall rankings. SB Nation's Tom Ziller even had some encouraging words for the Knicks:
My concerns with the .500 Knicks have been documented in this space all season. But let me say this: you want your favorite team facing the Knicks in the first round? I didn't think so. Carmelo Anthony and Amar'e Stoudemire can score on anyone, and while they are very obviously struggling to figure it out, they can each turn a game on a dime.
The Knicks sit seventh in the Eastern Conference playoff picture right now and are in no danger of missing out on the playoffs. There is a possibility, though, that the Knicks could wind up facing Boston in the opening round of the playoffs. If the Celtics lose the top seed to Chicago and face the Knicks in the opening round you have to believe after what the Knicks did Monday night -- imploding down the stretch -- that New York would be one-and-done in the NBA playoffs.
The New Jersey Nets sit 27th and, after a nice five-game winning streak seem to be coming back down to earth.