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After all the speculation, the NBA’s free-agent frenzy is finally here, and after all these year, the Knicks are finally ready to realize their dream of being a player in the free-agent market.

I just want to announce, as a lifelong Knicks fan, that whatever the outcome, I want to thank them for at least trying. If they don’t get LeBron James, Dwyane Wade, or even the likes of Joe Johnson, expect them to be crushed by media and fans as a failure. Which wouldn’t be wrong. Missteps probably have been made (the few draft picks they have had recently are hardly scintillating, they don’t seem to have planned for some sort of bench or role players after getting their superstars, and I suspect they thought Tracy McGrady could still play), but I want to stand up and at least applaud the philosophy. There’ll be plenty of time to bitch about the execution later.

For years, this was a team done in by the quick fix, trading for not-quite-good-enough-players now in order to stay relevant and competitive with no realistic shot at a title. But, the more you watch the NBA, the more you know that without a superstar and a pretty good No. 2 leading the way, you’re just cannon fodder for the Jordans, Olajuwons, Shaqs, Duncans, and Kobes. Knick fans had caught on to this as this philosophy was executed in progressively worse fashion by Scott Layden and Isiah Thomas.

So I’m glad they finally acknowledged that in order to be great, they had to at least try to swing for the fences. And I’m glad that they actually proved that yes, New York fans will stand for a rebuilding project. So we can throw away that trope. Sure it would have been nice to try to rebuild with draft choices, but, um, well, they don’t have many of those on the horizon.

So if they trot out these second-tier free agents left behind in the dance of musical chairs (in Arenas’ case, after a trade for Eddy Curry made in desperation), I won’t be happy, but I’ll be OK. At least I know they tried, and that they acknowledged how championships are actually won in the NBA instead of patching it together with quick fixes like the Knicks have been doing for pretty much since I’ve been alive.

Before of course, they return to that philosophy. $2000 courtside seats don’t sell themselves, people.


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