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Tony Jones: Knicks are finally getting their due

Published April 20, 2013 4:31 pm

NBA • Their shot at a title has been a long time coming.
This is an archived article that was published on sltrib.com in 2013, and information in the article may be outdated. It is provided only for personal research purposes and may not be reprinted.

One win down.

Only 15 more to go.

I'm allowed to dream, right? As a Hoyas fan, a Mets fan and a Redskins fan, I'm not often in this position. You know, the position of rooting for a team that's very good.

That's what it is to be a fan of the Knicks, New York's team that's found a way to break hearts in every season since 1973. I mean, we're still holding on to the image of Willis Reed limping out of the tunnel of Madison Square Garden.

My Knicks destroyed the Boston Celtics on Saturday to start the NBA playoffs. Actually, 85-78 was the final. But what's a little exaggeration for a fan of the Knicks? We finally have a shot at making at least the Eastern Conference finals. We finally have a team capable of making a run. We finally have a superstar in Carmelo Anthony, a defensive stalwart in Tyson Chandler, a wily old veteran in Jason Kidd, a coach who isn't comatose on the sidelines in Mike Woodson.

Our front office isn't paying Stephon Marbury, or Clarence Weatherspoon, or Luc Longley millions of undeserved dollars. Isaiah Thomas isn't sullying our good name with scandal and terrible moves. We finally aren't a laughingstock. Heck, it only took 15 years to transition from the 1990s Knicks to now. It's been a long road.

Of course, I brought all of this up in the office of The Salt Lake Tribune and found myself being laughed at, my optimism mocked. I take this time to remind everyone that they mocked Noah too, all before begging for a spot on the ark before the skies opened.

I know the Miami Heat loom, LeBron James a gigantic roadblock to championship glory. But the Knicks have handled the Heat in the regular season. No need to believe it can't be done in the playoffs.

People will scoff at this prediction, this I know. But fan interest has taken a tough road lately. Georgetown was embarrassed in the first round of the NCAA Tournament. The Redskins were bounced early by the Seattle Seahawks, and have a gimpy Robert Griffin III. My New York Mets only traded away the best pitcher in baseball last season.

As a result? I'm due. The sporting higher beings have to reward me, and it starts with the Knicks. So, one down and only 15 more to go. The goal is the NBA title. I'm giving everyone the chance to hop on the bandwagon now.

There's plenty of room.

tjones@sltrib.com

Twitter: @tjonessltrib