Baseball Magazine

Linsanity is Fading Quickly as the New York Knicks Continue to Struggle

By Beardandstache @BeardAndStache

Linsanity is Fading Quickly as the New York Knicks Continue to Struggle

Photo: Getty Images - Chris Trotman

- Troy Ballard

Jeremy Lin's quick rise into stardom was sensational, but as the New York Knicks continue to slide, the team and the NBA have been hit with a serious reality check.
As fabulous as Lin's play has been, and even with the immense talent that the Knicks have, there is still a major issue. New York isn't winning games. It's that simple.
Over the past nine-games New York has lost six, and the team is currently on a three game losing streak. At Madison Square Garden, the Knicks are barley above .500, and on the road they have fallen below that line.
There are games where the offense comes to a grinding halt, and the Knicks struggle to keep pace. While in others, the offense is explosive, but New York ends up losing due to a lack of presence on the defensive end.
What's up New York?
It would almost be too easy to poke fun at Carmelo 'don't pass the ball' Anthony, but the problem goes way beyond one star's lack of ball movement. It's more than Amare Stoudemire's underwhelming play on both offense and defense. It's even more than a lack of solid bench players. It's the whole team that's the issue.
Lin re-energized the Knicks, had the group playing solid team basketball, and New York won games. That was at the beginning of the amazing February run to push Linsanity to all new heights. But like anything, old habits die hard.
The Knicks have fallen victim to the same issues that plagued the team before. Lack of that all important ball movement, selfish play on the offensive end, absolutely no effort on the glass, and my personal favorite, the absence of anything that even slightly resembles defense.
It's a vicious cycle that New York is stuck in. A cycle that at the moment has the team behind the Boston Celtics and Philadelphia 76ers in the Atlantic, and barley inching into the playoffs as the eighth seed in the East. It's the same issues that could have New York missing the playoffs entirely this season.
I wrote at the beginning of this season, after the Knicks incredibly slow start, that the team needed a point guard more desperately than any team in the NBA. This was of course long before Linsanity kicked in, and once it did, for a brief moment, it appeared that New York had found the team's savior.
New York has a point guard now. He may be turnover prone, but Lin is still an excellent play maker and facilitator. His style of play fits perfectly in with the run-and-gun offense that Mike D'Antoni runs, especially when flanked by superstars like Anthony and Stoudemire.
And yet, the Knicks continues to lose games.
It doesn't happen often in sports, but New York may be dealing with a situation where a group of players just can't work together. The team has enough talent to sink a ship, but the Knicks continue to blow games that should be easy wins. They're eons away from being able to seriously contend with teams like the Miami Heat and Chicago Bulls, which would be te biggest obstacles in the postseason.
The issue is only compounded by the condensed NBA season. The Knicks are in a bad situation, and chances are, things will get worse before they get better. But for New York fans, this is just another season that is par for the course of disappointment.
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