Wednesday, April 11, 2007

We Come to Bury The Knicks

I was going to take the day off from writing. But this is too fun to pass up. The Bulls thrashed the Knicks 98-69 last night and afterwards the Knicks were really, really angry. As most of you know, Bulls' fans get a free Big Mac if the Bulls win the game and score 100 points. So, whenever the Bulls close in on 100 points the crowd gets really into the chase for a free burger. I'm a season ticket holder, and honestly I, like a lot of people, give the voucher for a free burger to one of the homeless people who try to scrape together some change outside the stadium on game nights. Almost anyone who can afford to be at a Bulls game doesn't need a free Big Mac. The 100 point challenge is just a fun way to cap off a Bulls' win.

So, a big thumbs down to Rosenbloom, who on AM 1000 this morning was bashing the Bulls for going after 100, and the fans for caring. First, who is he to bash Chicago sports fans for anything. He has a career because people in this town love sports. Get down from your soap box and kiss my feet for caring enough about Chicago sports that I'll even listen to your craptastic show. Second, neither the team nor the fans are making a serious commitment to the idea of a free burger. The cheering, and last night's booing when Michael Sweetney missed a tip in as time wound down, are just in fun. The booing did not, as Rosenbloom suggested in a serious tone, indicate that a 98-69 thrashing of the Knicks "wasn't enough for you people."

More amusingly, however, the Knicks had their knickers all in a twist over this. Steve Francis and Nate Robinson confronted Thabo Sefolosha and Tyrus Thomas on the floor after the buzzer, and Jerome James tried to go after Thomas in the hallway outside the locker rooms. For the record, Francis played 30 minutes, shot 2 of 8 for six points, collected 1 assist to go with a turnover, and the Knicks were outscored by 18 while he was on the floor. Robinson actually made some contribution, shooting 8 of 17 in his 40 minutes of action. He finished with 24 points. Of course, his four turnovers and no assists (what position do these guys play again?), as well as his inability to guard a chair, contributed to an impressive -21 +/-. James, in contrast, actually broke even in +/-, but of course, that's because he DIDN'T EVEN PLAY!

The Knicks were embarrassed? The Knicks feel disrespected? I have an idea: show the f**k up! The Knicks shot 37% percent, turned the ball over 24 times (to 8 for the Bulls), and had 27 points at half time. It was the worst performance I've seen by an NBA team in a long time, maybe ever. And I remember not only the Brent Barry era, but the original Reggie Theus era here in Chicago, so I know bad basketball. The Bulls have become a model organization again, and appropriately, their players were more concerned about having fun with their extremely loyal fans than hurting the feelings of the most selfish, least competent group of players in the league. Yeah Stevie, there's a reason you've only played five playoff games in your eight year career. And no, it's not everyone else's fault.

Things are so bad in New York that I actually feel a little bad for Stephon Marbury. But as little respect as I have for this team, I hope this organization maintains its current structure for the foreseeable future. First, they provide endless amusement, as demonstrated last night. Second, they're useful to have around as a trading partner. Now, if we can just figure out what to do with the Knicks first round pick this summer.


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